Kuala Lumpur: Fresh satellite images taken during the search for a missing passenger jet show 122 “potential objects” in one area of the Indian Ocean, Malaysia said on Wednesday.
The images from Airbus Defence and Space in France show the objects in a 400-square-kilometre (160-square-mile) area of the ocean, said Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein.
Hishammuddin told a daily press conference it was not possible to say whether the objects came from the Boeing 777 which crashed on March 8 with 239 people aboard.
“Nevertheless, this is another new lead that will help direct the search operation,” he said.
Earlier satellite data from Australia, China and France had also shown floating objects possibly related to MH370, but nothing has so far been retrieved despite a huge multinational search.
Hishammuddin said the Airbus images were taken on Sunday, received Tuesday, and immediately forwarded to the Australian agency coordinating the search.
He said the Malaysian Remote Sensing Agency had identified the 122 “potential objects” after analysing the satellite images.
Some were a metre in length while others were as long as 23 metres.
“Some of the objects appeared to be bright, possibly indicating solid materials,” the minister said.
They were located about 2,557 kilometres (1,600 miles) from Perth. The search effort has focused on waters far to the southwest of Australia.