Australian investigators are recruiting a Dutch-based surveying specialist to assist with the preparations for a new search for Malaysia Airlines' missing Boeing 777.

Leidschendam-based Fugro is to deploy a survey vessel, the Fugro Equator, to carry out a bathymetric examination of the search area.

"The seabed data obtained will assist in the production of maps of the seabed offshore Western Australia," the company states, adding that the region is "relatively uncharted".

It says the vessel will be carrying multibeam echo-sounding equipment. The ship will begin its work by mid-June.

Fugro believes its maps will help with the planning of a new underwater search effort for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 which disappeared, with its entire complement of passengers and crew, while operating the Kuala Lumpur-Beijing route on 8 March.

Australia's government is gathering the data as it prepares to select an organisation to perform an extensive underwater search for MH370's wreckage, a search which will last up to 300 days.

Source: Cirium Dashboard