In July of 2018, we received the final Malaysian Investigator’s report, concluding that “the team is unable to determine the real cause for the disappearance of MH370”. They were also unable to definitively conclude whether the aircraft broke up in the air or during impact in the Indian Ocean.
However, a new National Geographic documentary, to be shown on Thursday as a part of its new Drain The Oceans series, claims that Flight MH370’s demise culminated with the jet’s fatal impact with the water.
Following the disappearance of Flight MH370, a Malaysian Airlines Boing 777 heading from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, the reasons behind its demise are still unknown. In the ensuing months after the crash, many presumed the 239 people aboard to still be alive, with little evidence to either support or counter that claim. After many months with no conclusive evidence, these passengers were presumed dead. However, the investigation continued.
The mass consensus in popular culture has been that the pilot committed suicide and crashed the plane on purpose. However, due to the lack of evidence or surviving witnesses, this can never be distinctively proven.
Only a couple confirmed fragments were found on the shores of Reunion Island, with other scattered pieces of debris found washed up on the shores Mozambique, South Africa, and Madagascar, but without conclusive evidence to tie it to the MH370 aircraft.
As small signs of possible evidence come through, more and more theories are offered into the missing Boing 777. Just a couple weeks ago a man named Ian Wilson, a digital producer from the United Kingdom, believed he had spotted the plane on Google Maps in a Cambodian jungle.
Chinese satellite companies have been keen to explore these claims but overall, these claims have been deemed to have little merit since the only confirmed fragments from the airplane were found on Reunion Island, 4000 miles from the Cambodian jungle.
National Geographic’s new theory seems to be more in line with much of the evidence and the official report, but has a different conclusion.
According to the Malaysian Investigation’s official speculations, it is believed that the plane had been flying on autopilot before the engine suffered a “flame-out” due to fuel exhaustion. The autopilot then supposedly corrected engine failure and it was concluded that the aircraft would “roll gently to the left due to residual rudder deflection commanded by the Thrust Asymmetry Compensation (TAC).”
The engineers from the National Geographic programme’s theory, however, believe that the plane did not veer left for 140 miles and instead entered into a deep, spiral dive at a 45% vertical angle, with the left wing pointed downwards. Survival then would have been impossible.
The documentary also contains images of what the ocean floor would look like if it were drained, with images of the broken-up plane scattered across it.
It is not conclusive whether National Geographic’s new insight into Flight MH370’s disappearance will bring any new developments to light, or if it is just another speculation like those offered before.