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US Navy Official: Acoustic pings not likely to be from MH370

Almost 3 months later, the search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 has hardly made any progress.

And, the mystery deepened after a U.S. Navy official said four acoustic pings which were at the heart of the search are no longer believed to be from the aircraft's black boxes, according to a report by CNN.

Early last month, a series of pings were picked up near where analysis of satellite data put the last location of the plane, which was about 1,600km off Australia's northwest coast.

Pings from unrelated source

According to U.S. Navy's deputy director of ocean engineering, authorities now almost universally believe the pings did not come from the onboard data or cockpit voice records. Instead, Dean said it could have come from some other man-made source unrelated to the Boeing 777 that disappeared on March 8. 

Dean added: "Our best theory at this point is that (the pings were) likely some sound produced by the ship... or within the electronics of the Towed Pinger Locator."

No answers from extensive search

No other signals were heard before the expiry of the batteries on the black boxes' locator beacons.

The most extensive and expensive search effort in aviation history has yielded no results so far. No debris linked to the plane has been picked up and a scan of the area with a submarine failed to find any sign of wreckage.

MH370 was carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew when it vanished on March 8.

Source: CNN, Reuters, The Guardian