Black Box Key to Unraveling MH370 Mystery - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Black Box Key to Unraveling MH370 Mystery

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So many potential answers to this mystery lie in a small metal container that for the moment has disappeared with Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370. They were once called black boxes, but they're actually orange. They have the cockpit voice recorder, capturing what the pilots say and the flight data recorder with the plane's speed, direction, crucial mechanical data. They can withstand crashes and can function even from the bottom of the ocean. But the clock's ticking.

"The pingers, the locators on those devices only last for 30-days," says Alan Diehl, former NTSB Air Safety Investigator.

Safety experts say with this incident it's time to figure out how to stream that information live instead of waiting for the box to be recovered from the crash site.

"You can get a lot of information out very quickly. And this could be recorded information, say for the last 10-minutes that is sent almost instantaneously if the aircraft gets in some kind of distress."

Experts say data would stream live from the aircraft to a satellite, then to the ground. If the plane goes into a rapid roll or sudden loss of altitude, it would automatically trigger the data-stream. The technology exists. Why haven't airlines installed it?

"It takes a certain amount of money to retrofit the fleets. And secondly, it costs money to stream through a satellite."

Plus, the airlines would have to build ground stations to take in the data. Expensive, considering most accidents like this are very rare.

"You only have this kind of accident rarely, but when you have it, it is extraordinarily expensive. Hundreds of millions of dollars were spent searching for Air France 447."

Searchers took two-years to find the data recorders for that Air France flight that went down in the Atlantic in 2009 killing 228 people.

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