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Smith obtained his pilot’s license in 2005 and has a second-class medical certification, allowing him to operate commercial aircraft.
As part of Wednesday’s search, aircraft were flying grid patterns over the area in question, authorities said.
Also, the Civil Air Patrol was using forward-looking infrared radar in the search — specialized equipment brought in from Wyoming that detects ground temperatures and can pick up anomalies, such as sunlight reflecting off metal.
Authorities said they continued to seek a faint emergency locator transmitter signal thought to have been picked up Tuesday, but the signal could not be verified by other aircraft searching in the same area Wednesday. Because the search may be misleading due to the mountainous terrain and the unreliable nature of the signal, the teams were expanding the scope of the search, authorities said.
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