Earhart Project Research Bulletin
July, 2002
Artifact 2-6-S-45

Secrets of the Knob

Symbol #14

Analysis and photos courtesy Jeff Glickman, Photek Imaging.


This is an analysis of photomicrographs of symbol #14 on TIGHAR artifact 2-6-S-45, commonly known as “the knob.” The photos are visually degraded because of the JPEG format which is used to enable email transmission.

This analysis contains 3 images which are separately annotated. Symbol #14 is heavily encrusted, and damaged.


Original Image: The upper portion of this symbol is visible; the lower portion is encrusted and damaged. The key visible feature is the loop located at the top of the symbol. The loop is small, and narrow, approximately half the height of the symbol, which excludes 0 as a candidate symbol. The presence of the loop excludes 1 as a candidate symbol. 4 is excluded as the top is either open or has square edges. 5 is excluded because the upper left corner should be pointed or squared. 7 is excluded because the top should be flat. Therefore the initial candidate set for symbol #14 is: 2, 3, 6, 8 and 9.

Notes:

  1. Inner loop.
  2. Loop continues below the horizontal.
  3. Concavity.
  4. Possible insult/damage.
  5. Dominant angle of lower encrustation is diagonal from lower-left to upper right.

A 3 needs an opening to the upper left of the loop, and some indication of a partial lower loop. There is support for neither. This excludes a 3.

A 6 needs an opening to the upper right of the loop and some indication of a lower loop. There is support for neither. This excludes a 6.

An 8 needs a lower loop. There is no support for this. This excludes an 8. A 2 needs an opening to the upper left of the loop, and a horizontal line in the lower encrusted area. There is support for neither. This excludes a 2.

A 9 needs a diagonal from the lower-left to the upper-right which is supported by the evidence.

 

Conclusion: The symbol features suggest TIGHAR artifact 2-6-S-45 symbol #14 is probably a nine (“9”). The most likely first alternate is a two (“2”).

 


Jeff Glickman • Photek • Board Certified Forensic Examiner • Fellow, American College of Forensic Examiners • 503-949-6200

Symbol #14

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