KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — The largest contingent yet of search planes and ships hunting for a missing Malaysian airliner ended work Monday without success.

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — The largest contingent yet of search planes and ships hunting for a missing Malaysian airliner ended work Monday without success.


Ten ships and 10 planes from seven countries scoured a section of the Indian Ocean larger than California during the day, hoping to find debris from Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which vanished March 8 with 239 people on board.


An Australian navy support vessel left for the search area on Monday with equipment that will allow the crew to begin listening for "pings" from the plane’s black box, according to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA). It is expected to take "several days" to arrive and begin hunting for the device, a critical piece of equipment that contains audio recordings from the cockpit and flight data, the AMSA said late Monday.


Locating the black box is perhaps the best chance that investigators have of deciphering exactly where the airliner went down and what happened to it.


But time is running out. The box emits signals for about 30 days, which means that by the time the ship arrives in the search area to begin looking for it, the battery may have less than a week left before it goes silent.


"We will never give up until we find out what happened to MH370," Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said Monday.


Hishammuddin announced that a new joint agency will be formed at Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce north of Perth to coordinate the hunt for the plane.


Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said he was "not putting a time limit" on the search.


On Friday, the operation effectively restarted in a completely different section of the southern Indian Ocean than where it had been focused. The search was moved 680 miles northeast after new analysis by investigators indicated that the aircraft had been traveling faster than previously thought and, therefore, would have run out of fuel much sooner.


Meanwhile, 29 Chinese who had family members on the flight arrived Sunday in Kuala Lumpur seeking answers from the Malaysian government about what happened to their loved ones. Two-thirds of the 227 passengers aboard the flight were Chinese, and their relatives have expressed deep frustration with Malaysian authorities since the plane disappeared.


"We have demanded that we meet with the prime minister and the transportation minister," said Wang Chunjiang, whose younger brother, Wang Chunyong, was on the flight, the Associated Press reported. "We have questions that we would like to ask them in person."