KUALA LUMPUR - The Australian authorities have shifted the search and rescue area for Flight MH370 to about 1,100km to the north-east of the current location in the southern Indian Ocean.
The new search area, roughly 1,680km west of Perth, remains in the Australian area of responsibility.
The new location, according to Acting Transport Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, was based on a finding that the aircraft flew at a higher speed than previously thought.
"The authorities of various countries have re-examined information and further refined existing data, coming up with new technical information, for example, on aircraft performance.
"Yesterday, this process yielded new results, which indicated that MH370 flew at a higher speed than previously thought, which in turn means it used more fuel and could not have travelled as far," he told the daily press conference held at the Putra World Trade Centre here yesterday.
Hishammuddin, who is also Defence Minister, said the US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) had passed on the new information to Australia to help further refine and narrow the search area.
Hishamuddin said while the search was ongoing, the authorities would continue to refine the findings.
"It is a process of continually refining data, which in turn further narrows the search area. With each step, we get closer to understanding MH370's flight path," he said.
He said searches must be conducted on the best information available at the time.
"In the search for MH370, we have consistently followed the evidence, and acted on credible leads.
"Our search and rescue efforts have been directed by verified and corroborated information. This latest refinement of the search area is no different."
He said the authorities would place equal importance to any leads discovered.
He also revealed that Japanese authorities had satellite images showing a number of floating objects approximately 2,500km south-west of Perth.
"Early this morning, we received separate satellite imagery from the Thai authorities that also showed potential objects," he said.
The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (Amsa) at the conclusion of the search yesterday, said that aircraft involved in the search combed a total of 256,000sq km and spotted multiple objects of various colours.
"Photographic imagery of the objects was captured and will be assessed overnight. The objects cannot be verified or discounted as being from MH370 until they are relocated and recovered by ships."