A British naval ship has joined the search for the missing Malaysian plane, the MH370, after possible debris was spotted, the Ministry of Defence said on Thursday.
The survey ship HMS Echo is in the Indian Ocean, where the Australian prime minister said a satellite had detected objects including a 24-metre (79-feet) long piece of debris.
The ship is designed to collect ocean data to support submarine and amphibious operations and is equipped with a survey motor boat and a contingent of Royal Marines.
Malaysian Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein described the debris as a “credible lead”.
A Norwegian merchant ship on Thursday became the first vessel to reach the area where the debris was spotted, about 2,500 kilometres (1,553 miles) southwest of Perth.
Ships and aircraft from a host of countries have been deployed in the search along two corridors stretching from the southern Indian Ocean to South and Central Asia.
The HMS Echo was designed to carry out a wide range of survey work, including support to submarine and amphibious operations, through the collection of oceanographic and bathymetric (analysis of the ocean, its salinity and sound profile) data.