Parts of the crashed Airbus A330-200 recovered as part of salvage operations for Air France Flight 447 have now been brought to France, the BEA, the French air accident investigation agency says.
The elements have been taken to the defense ministry's aeronautical test center (CEAT) in Toulouse.
The initial review of debris led investigators to believe the aircraft did not come apart in flight but struck the ocean surface intact and at a high velocity. Investigators have indicated they may be able to determine more, possibly the velocity with which the aircraft came down, but only upon further investigation of parts.
Meanwhile, the French research vessel, the Pourquoi Pas? is getting ready to begin a new phase of the search operation to help locate more parts of the crashed airliner, including the still unrecovered cockpit voice and flight data recorders. The ship will use sonar and submersibles. This phase is expected to run about a month at which point the BEA will need to decide how to proceed from there.