MH370: Pilot avoided detection

Analysis data shows the pilot flying the MH370 carefully avoided Indonesian airspace to avoid detection.

Crew members look out the windows from a Malaysian Air Force CN235 aircraft during a search and rescue (SAR) operation to find the missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 plane over the Strait of Malacca on March 14, 2014. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG - Analysis of radar data has shown that the pilot flying the missing Malaysian Airlines plane carefully avoided Indonesian airspace to avoid detection.

The data shows that the plane took a series of turns to avoid detection as it headed south.

Approximately 239 people, including flight staff, were on board the plane when it went missing while travelling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing last month.

CNN's Nic Robertson says, "This is very important information because it shows that after the aircraft essentially flew around Indonesia, it then took another significant turn to fly south down the flight path at the end of which the search operation is underway right now."

Earlier, Chinese and Australian vessels detected signals that may be from the plane's flight recorders.

They picked up separate acoustic signals in different parts of a vast Indian Ocean search area and are trying to verify if one could be from the plane's black box recorders.

Australia air force teams have since dispatched planes to search the area.

The president of Sarasota, Florida-based Dukane Seacom - the company that makes the pinger - Anish Patel, says more information is needed.

"My degree of scepticism is high. We'll have to get some cooperation, I'd like to see some additional assets put on sight quickly. Also, we'd like to understand why now two signals. There should be a second beacon from either the flight data recorder or the voice recorder."

Map showing the Australia-led search zone in the Indian Ocean for Malaysia Airlines MH370. Picture: AFP

Meanwhile, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said he was "hopeful but by no means certain" that the reported pulse signals were related to MH370.

"This is the most difficult search in human history. We are searching for an aircraft which is at the bottom of a very deep ocean and it is a very, very wide search area," Abbott told reporters in Tokyo, where he is on a visit.

Up to a dozen planes and 13 ships will be scouring three separate areas about 2,000 km northwest of Perth, Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Centre said.