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In addition to the urgent task of recovering the passengers still missing, investigators are racing to find the flight's black boxes.
Officials need these recorders to determine what exactly happened to AirAsia 8501, and to try to prevent it from happening again.
CNN Safety Analyst David Soucie and CNN Aviation Analyst Les Abend discuss.
Aviation and safety experts say the majority of the missing are likely together... still strapped in to the plane's main cabin.
Wednesday, an Indonesian search official told CNN he thought sonar equipment detected something that looked like the main fuselage at the bottom of the sea, but now search and rescue officials are backing off that statement.
CNN's Suzanne Malveaux has the latest details on the hunt for AirAsia 8501.
CNN's Tom Foreman takes a look at the search area on the Magic Wall.
Families of the missing remain huddled in Surabaya, Indonesia, day after day, waiting for the grim news.
It's been a particularly difficult test of faith for a small group of worshippers. The group has only 45,000 congregants around Indonesia, and a local pastor says 46 members of the church boarded Flight 8501.
CNN's David Molko reports from Surabaya.
(CNN) - It's 2015 somewhere right now!
The year we were promised hoverboards, Jaws 19 and a Cubs' World Series in "Back to the Future, Part II."
"The Lead" takes a look at celebrations around the world, from Moscow to Taiwan.