WELLINGTON. — The yearlong search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has turned up no sign of the plane, but that doesn’t mean it’s been unproductive. It has yielded lessons and discoveries that could benefit millions, including coastal Australians, air and sea travellers and scientists trying to understand ancient changes to the earth’s crust.

The knowledge gained so far is of little comfort to family and friends of the 239 people still missing from the plane, which vanished last March 8 during a flight from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to Beijing.

While finding the plane remains the top priority for searchers and investigators, what they’re learning along the way may prove valuable long after the search ends. — AP.