The search for Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370; an image engineering approach

Scantherma will be holding a presentation for Engineers Australia to showcase its methods using different image engineering to assist with the search for Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370. The presentation will be held at the Engineers Australia WA Division in West Perth. Details to follow:

Abstract

On the 8th of March 2014, Malaysian Flight MH370 disappeared. What followed was an un-precedent search effort involving over a dozen countries and a combined search area of over 1/10th of the Earth’s surface. At no time in modern aviation has there been such a myriad of facets in the use of technology in finding an aircraft. Scantherma was tasked  to use its “object-based image analysis” (OBIA) algorithms to comb through hundreds of satellite images containing potential wreckage in the southern Indian Ocean. This proved to be a new approach in utilising image engineering to a totally different audience. After more than 3 weeks of analysis, the search using satellite imagery was abandoned. However, the exercise proved extremely useful in not only identifying new OBIA methods; but also its application towards oceanic remote sensing in general.

Image showing velocity of currents in the eastern Indian Ocean. Overlayed is the  search areas analysed by satellite imagery over 3 weeks in March and April, 2014. The input of current velocity and direction was crucial in setting up algorithms for the use of OBIA. [Source: Scantherma 2014]

Image showing velocity of currents in the eastern Indian Ocean. Overlayed is the search areas analysed by satellite imagery over 3 weeks in March and April, 2014. The input of current velocity and direction was crucial in setting up algorithms for the use of OBIA. [Source: Scantherma 2014]

Software Used
  • Trimble eCognition
  • Mappt
  • ER Mapper
  • QGIS
Acknowledgements
  • Christian Hoffmann (Trimble)
  • Trevor Marshall
  • Michael Breen
  • JJ Rodrigues