Searchers Think They Found Amelia Earhart's Debris Field

HD pics show evidence of a manmade debris field on isolated island

By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff

Posted Aug 19, 2012 5:20 AM CDT

(Newser) – Last month's search for Amelia Earhart's plane seemingly ended in failure, but forensic investigators now think they might have actually uncovered evidence of a plane wheel and landing gear, reports ABC News. The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) wasn't able to analyze its high definition camera's images while at Nikumaroro Island, but since then the group's imaging specialist thinks he has been able to identify a debris field in the pictures.

"We don't know whether it's her plane, but what we have is a debris field in a place where there should be a debris field if what we had put together based on the evidence that we had is correct," said TIGHAR executive Ric Gillespie. But don't expect future expeditions to miraculously turn up a whole plane, as the waters around Nikumaroro are treacherous and subject to mudslides, Gillespie noted.

Ric Gillespie, right, founder of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, watches equipment testing alongside Wolfgang Burnside from aboard a ship at port in Honolulu on Sunday, July 1, 2012. Gillespie is leading a month-long voyage to find plane wreckage from Amelia Earhart's Lockheed Electra, which disappeared over the...
Ric Gillespie, right, founder of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery, watches equipment testing alongside Wolfgang Burnside from aboard a ship at port in Honolulu on Sunday, July 1,...   (AP Photo/Oskar Garcia)
Enhanced analysis of a photograph taken just months after Amelia Earhart's plane vanished shows what experts think may be the landing gear of the aircraft, the small black object on the left side of the image, protruding from the waters off the remote island of Nikumaroro, in what is now...
Enhanced analysis of a photograph taken just months after Amelia Earhart's plane vanished shows what experts think may be the landing gear of the aircraft, the small black object on the left side of the...   (AP Photo/The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery)
An undated file photo shows Amelia Earhart, the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.
An undated file photo shows Amelia Earhart, the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.   (AP Photo)
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