(Photo: Screen Grab via CNN)
The search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 could possibly have to start all over again as members of the International Investigation Team say the plane may not have crashed in the southern Indian Ocean.
Investigation sources told Malaysian publication New Strait Times that the team has not ruled out the possibility that the aircraft may not be where they have been looking.
"We may have to regroup soon to look into this possibility if no positive results come back in the next few days ... but at the same time, the search mission in the Indian Ocean must go on," explained the sources.
"The thought of it landing somewhere else is not impossible, as we have not found a single debris that could be linked to MH370. However, the possibility of a specific country hiding the plane when more than 20 nations are searching for it, seems absurd," the sources added, while noting that the flight could have crashed in a remote location.
Monday marked 45 days since the search for the missing jet began and sources say it is very difficult to say whether or not the plane ended up in the Indian.
The Malaysia-led investigation team, according to the report, had to rely on a communications satellite which did not provide definitive details of the plane's trajectory, including its direction, altitude and speed.
"A communications satellite is meant for communication ... the name is self-explanatory. The reason investigators were forced to adopt a new algorithm to calculate the last known location of MH370 was because there was no global positioning system following the aircraft as the transponder went off 45 minutes into the flight," said one of the sources. As the search is widened, the team fears that they have been "looking for the plane in the wrong place."
"We can't focus on one place too long as the ocean is very big although the search team has been following the leads received and analyzed."
Even Australian officials who have been involved in the search appear to be less optimistic about finding the plane in the current search area despite recently locating an "object of interest," according to CNN.
Australian Transport Safety Bureau Chief Commissioner Martin Dolan said the object, recovered on the coast of Western Australia, appeared to be sheet metal with rivets.
"It's sufficiently interesting for us to take a look at the photographs," he said. "We take all leads seriously." He then expressed caution about getting optimistic.
"The more we look at it, the less excited we get," said Dolan.