TECH

Malaysian Airlines MH370 Satellite Image Search: Here's How You Can Help Find 'Missing' Plane

13/03/2014 09:25 GMT | Updated 13/03/2014 09:59 GMT

The continued mystery surrounding the fate of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 has thousands of people turning to the internet for news, support -- and to try and lend their hands to help.

And while early attempts to use satellite imagery to try and locate the Boeing 777 plane have not always gone to plan, there are hopes that a more consistent, organised effort could yield results.

There are now several places that interested people can go to try and scour through images and data to try and help find the missing airliner, and discover the fate of its more than 239 passengers and crew.

Perhaps the biggest effort is being undertaken with the help of DigitalGlobe, who are using their Tomnod crowdsourcing platform to power a massive database of satellite imagery for people to look through.

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Above: So far more than 25,000 people have signed up to help.

So far there is only a limited amount of images on the site, but DigitalGlobe said it will update its platform with more images as it becomes available.

Each time you load up a new image, Tomnod presents you with an area a few hundred metres square, which should make it possible to see debris, under certain conditions, including plane wreckage and fuel on the surface.

Unfortunately there's no way to be sure if what you're seeing is a fishing boat or a piece of fuselage, so you have to use your judgement and be responsible when using it. Several parties have expressed concern that the search could do more harm than good if it makes it too difficult to separate the good information from the sheer weight of replies. The fact is, the scale of the search means you almost certainly won't be the one to find the airliner.

In addition the weight of interest in the site has led to server problems, as thousands try to log in at once and lend their support.