The cockpit voice recorder of the crashed EgyptAir flight MS804 has been found by search teams in the Mediterranean sea.
This is a major breakthrough for the investigators seeking to explain what caused the Airbus A320 to crash.
A specialist vessel owned by Mauritius-based Deep Ocean Search was forced to salvage the recorder in stages because it was extensively damaged, reports Reuters.
The memory unit, considered the most important part of the recorder has however been retrieved and will be handed over to investigators on the coast of Alexandria for onward analysis.
The recovery of the voice recorder comes hours after a French deep ocean vessel identified the wreckage of the crashed plane.
The cockpit voice recorder will help investigators hear what the pilot and co-pilot were saying to each other as well as any alarms that may have been triggered in the final moments leading to the crash.
Two specialist vessels, John Lethbridge and Laplace, are however continuing the search for the second black box which contains the flight data recorder.
Debris of missing #EgyptAir plane found 290km north of Alexandria (Egypt State TV)— africanews (@africanews) May 20, 2016
Signals from the second box are yet to be detected even though the location of the wreckage has been identified.
The investigation committee on Monday said the black boxes would stop transmitting signals by June 24, a development which will make it difficult to locate the second device as the plane crashed into deep waters falling to about 3,000 meters below the surface.
The Airbus A320 from Paris to Cairo crashed into the Mediterranean sea on May 19 killing all 66 people on board.
Search teams have since been combing the Mediterranean searching for the black boxes and clues that could help them uncover the cause of the crash.