Beset by Problems, Search for Earhart's Plane Ends

But researchers still believe the aviator crashed near Nikumaroro
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 24, 2012 7:23 AM CDT
American aviatrix Amelia Earhart waves from the Electra before taking off from Los Angeles, Ca., on March 10, 1937.   (AP Photo, file)

(Newser) – The latest ambitious, expensive expedition to find Amelia Earhart's plane is returning to Hawaii, without the pictures of the plane researchers were hoping to obtain. "This is just sort of the way things are in this world," the president of the International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) tells the AP. "It's not like an Indiana Jones flick where you go through a door and there it is. It's not like that—it's never like that." The expedition was beset by reoccurring equipment problems that, coupled with underwater terrain that was more dangerous than expected, shortened the 10-day search to a five-day search.

But TIGHAR still believes Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan crashed near the remote Pacific island of Nikumaroro, and researchers will pore over the video and sonar data collected on the $2.2 million expedition during the return trip to Hawaii, in the hopes of uncovering something they may have missed on first look. The group plans to return to the area next year, this time to search the land. Another group will search near Howland Island later this year.

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