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TODAY   |  March 13, 2014

No debris in area of Flight 370 satellite images

A new report suggests the flight may have flown for hours after losing contact. Officials cast doubt on a satellite image of possible debris from the flight, saying the area has been searched. NBC’s Tom Costello reports.

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>> we learned the area in this chinese satellite image showing possible debris has already been searched but nothing was found. there was a report overnight that data transmitted from the plane suggests it flew for four hours once it lost contact. but malaysian officials say that may not be the case. good morning, tom.

>> reporter: the wall street journal reporting this morning that the data transmitted by the plane's engines suggest the plane kept running and the plane kept flying for four hours after the plane lost radar. the malaysian government insists it's been in communication with boeing and rolls-royce and the reports are inaccurate. there, images that the chinese satellite took saying they could be large pieces of the wreckage. but this morning malaysian officials say so far there's no sign of that debris.

>> the surveillance plane was dispatched this morning to investigate potential debris shown on chinese satellite images . we deployed our assets but found nothing.

>> reporter: whatever the chinese photos captured, it would have been very close to flight 370s original flight plan , which took it over the waters in vietnam. it took a slight jaunt to the right, followed its regular flight path , then nothing.

>> so for me this is like, it's a big mystery. i've never seen anything like this. and i really don't know what to believe.

>> reporter: meanwhile the malaysian military said it's still observing radar seeing if the plane took a left turn. with confusion where the flight might be, the flight zone has moved to 31,000 miles. 40 ships from a dozen navys on the scene. commander william marks is on the "u.s.s. blue ridge ."

>> a a very large area. it's about as large as the caribbean. that's about the comparison you can make.

>> in kuala lumpur , officials seem confused at time.

>> reporter: every day here, officials can't explain whether the plane even changed direction. their answers are at times contradictory.

>> reporter: u.s. military and intelligence agencies say they have no information on those chinese images. meanwhile, if the plane had kept running for four hours after it disappeared, this plane could have flown 2,200 miles further. still no trace whatsoever.

>> that expands the searchar considerably. tom costello, thanks very much.