A U.S.-based satellite operator has dedicated two of its satellites to photograph the search areas for missing Malaysian Airlines Flight 370, and is posting the images online Wednesday to let the combined forces of the Internet join the search effort.
DigitalGlobe’s volunteer search team will have access to new images of the Gulf of Thailand, South China Sea and the Strait of Malacca to look for traces of the aircraft after it went missing an hour into takeoff over the weekend during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.
Anyone interested in joining the search effort can find the images on the crowdsourcing website Tomnod, where the Internet’s volunteer rescue team overwhelmed the site’s servers Monday with more than 500,000 unique visitors scanning the first images. Senior manager Luke Barrington told The Wall Street Journal 100,000 users have already looked at the first images, meaning each pixel was scanned over 100 times.
The response will likely be even greater Wednesday — the site had already crashed before noon.
“DigitalGlobe is doing all of this work for free, just like the Tomnod users are doing it for free,” Barrington told the Denver Post. “That’s all part of our vision of seeing a better world and is a large reason I work here.”