It could be the break investigators have been seeking out for one month now in their search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Two separate signals were detected by the Australian vessel known as Ocean Shield over the weekend.
"Clearly, this is a most promising lead and probably in the search so far, it's probably the best information that we have had."
Houston said the first signal picked up in the Indian Ocean lasted for about two-and-a-half hours, and the second one for about 13 minutes.
Officials said the "pings" were consistent with those emitted by aircraft black boxes.
While optimistic about the discovery, Houston was quick to tamp down expectations.
He said further confirmation was needed as the sounds were heard from a depth of 45-hundred meters.
The search team plans to lower Bluefin 21, Ocean Shield's underwater autonomous vehicle, once they can pinpoint a more exact location for the signals.
But officials say it will take days to confirm whether the pings were from the missing aircraft.
The most pressing issue now is time.
The search entered its 31st day on Monday, and the batteries of the black box are feared to run out any day now, if they haven't already.
There are currently 12 aircraft and 14 ships taking part in search operations, but severe weather conditions in the south Indian Ocean are in the forecast, making their jobs even more difficult.
Flight 370, carying 239 people is believed to have gone down in the Indian Ocean sometime on March 8th.
Connie Kim, Arirang News.