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Author Topic: Sunrise Encounter  (Read 102311 times)

Martin X. Moleski, SJ

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #45 on: June 03, 2011, 10:53:41 PM »

I'll have to read about the search by the Itasca and Swan, I was not  aware of this. Is this in the archives somewhere? I'm not good at looking up items in the archives. Yet.

"Searches without Rescue."

"How to search tighar.org."
LTM,

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h.a.c. van asten

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #46 on: June 03, 2011, 11:22:14 PM »

Mr.B.Lloyd , Let it be that a position line exists and is linear for a short time only . if you have reasonable position to start from , it is very well possible to set course for another island than destination by flying the rhumb line , e.g. , to compass point 157 +/- variation on 15... magnetic. You should only be aware of your fuel reserves being ample to reach your evasive land point , and if not : stay where you are within the future rescue area.
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #47 on: June 04, 2011, 12:22:12 AM »

I have done minimum research, but here's what little I have learned. I looked for population figures in the Gilberts. The only one I found stated that in 1905 the population was down to around 300. Now it is what, 60,000? This is going to require getting a history of the Gilberts somewhere. Nowadays every single island and atoll is populated. In the 30 years from 1905-1937 the island gained much population, but how or why? Were some of the more worthless atolls uninhabited in 1937? I'll try to find out. The coordinates for each island are given, and they seem to be very close together. I'll have to determine what the mileage is between them. In other words, if you were directly over one island, you should be able to see to the next one. Now, if the distance between the Phoenix Islands are about 200 miles, and the distance between Gilberts is 20-50 miles, and the Gilberts are arranged along a line, and I desperately need to find an island quick, I'm opting for the Gilberts, everything else being equal.  Flying due west from the Howland vicinity, I can hardly miss, or at least my chances are much better than the spaced out Phoenixes. Besides, AE and FN thought, the Gilberts are populated so our chances of rescue are good, Phoenix = bad. They don't know the Navy is going to send out search planes to the Phoenixes. They don't need a good landing area, they figure they can ditch the plane in the water near an island and somehow get ashore if worst comes to worst. But they luck out and are able to land and send radio messages. This is my developing hypothesis.

----------------------------------------------

Tabituea is directly on course from Lae and about 550 nautical miles short of Howland. See:

https://sites.google.com/site/fredienoonan/resources/trial/gnc-20-8.JPG

and:

https://sites.google.com/site/fredienoonan/resources/trial/gnc-7-1.JPG

See generally:

https://sites.google.com/site/fredienoonan/resources/trial

Gary LaPook


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If you are aiming for a string of islands and if the spacing between adjacent
islands is less than twice the prevailing visibility, then you should not be able
to pass between them without seeing one or the other and so you can consider
them to be just one target combining both of their sizes and the prevailing
visibility.

In the Gilberts, from the south shore of Arorae on the south to the north shore
of Markei on the north is 284 NM (measured on a north-south line, perpendicular
to the probable course of Earhart's plane if aiming for the Gilberts) with the largest
gap between islands of only 38NM. So if the visibility is 20 NM this string of islands
represents a target 304 nautical miles wide.

Then there is a gap to the north of 65 NM to Makin which is 20 NM
in diameter. Then comes a large gap of 165 NM to the south shore of Knox in
the Marshalls. North of Mili there is a 45 NM gap. You could pass through any
of these three gaps with 20 nm visibility and not see any of the islands.

The problem is that the distance from Howland to the nearest one is 450 NM and it is 620 NM to the furthest.

Gary LaPook
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Gary LaPook

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #48 on: June 04, 2011, 12:30:13 AM »

After you intercepted your LOP (the shoreline) I'm guessing that you knew which way to turn to get to your destination since you aimed for a certain spot on the LOP. Works pretty good, eh? Maybe you and Noonan have something in common?

I knew which way to turn when I reached the lakeshore because the shore of Lake Erie runs pretty much East/West and my destination (Binghamton, NY) was beyond the East end of the lake.  In that sense, it really didn't matter where I hit the LOP.  It mattered to Noonan.

--------------------------------

What you did is exactly the same as the landfall procedure. You aimed for a linear feature (shoreline of Lake Erie for you, sun line LOP for a celestial navigator) that you can't miss and when you hit it you turned to follow it in the direction of your destination.

gl
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #49 on: June 04, 2011, 07:19:40 AM »

What you did is exactly the same as the landfall procedure. You aimed for a linear feature (shoreline of Lake Erie for you, sun line LOP for a celestial navigator) that you can't miss and when you hit it you turned to follow it in the direction of your destination.

That's true and that's where the similarity ends.  My LOP was an en route checkpoint. It did not fall through my intended destination. Although I aimed for a particular point (and hit it within about a mile) it didn't really matter where I hit it. Because I was approaching it from a shallow angle there was never any question about which way I would turn when I reached it so there was never a question of whether to use an offset. Also, my LOP was a physical feature.  Once I reached it I could quickly tell where I had intercepted it and I didn't need to DR to follow it.
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #50 on: June 04, 2011, 08:20:14 AM »

Flying due west from the Howland vicinity, I can hardly miss, or at least my chances are much better than the spaced out Phoenixes.

How do they know they're in the Howland vicinity?  How close do you have to be to Howland to be in the Howland vicinity?  All they know for sure is that they are somewhere on a 157 337 line that passes through Howland.  They haven't had any voice response to their calls to Itasca. They did hear Morse code "A"s - the pre-arranged signal from Itasca - but they couldn't get a bearing.  what's the problem?  Are they too far away or is there something wrong with their radio?  They don't know.

They know that Howland is somewhere on the line that they're on. That's all they have to go on. It would be crazy to leave that line. When Earhart says she is "running on line north and south" she is trying to find Howland. She did not say, "We're going to try for ...."   There is no indication that they at any time decided to stop trying to find Howland and proceed to some alternate destination whether it be the Phoenix Islands, the Gilbert Islands, or Coney Island.  When they head SSE on the line they're still hoping to see Howland appear.  When Gardner first appears on the horizon their first thought is probably, "Hallelujah! We found it!" but they would soon see that this island doesn't look anything like what Howland is supposed to look like.  But it's the only island they've got and it's infinitely better than no island at all.

A hypothesis that they decided to try return to the Gilberts has to discount the clear evidence that they did something else.  If you're going to discount evidence you can put them anywhere but don't expect anyone to take you seriously.
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david alan atchason

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #51 on: June 05, 2011, 07:02:58 PM »

I wasn't expecting anyone to take me too seriously, but the minimum research I have done, mostly by rereading your book, Ric, does not preclude my theory at all as I stated it roughly in previous posts. In fact if anything it makes me more confident. Yes, the possibility exists that I am way off and only making a fool of myself, but I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. As I believe, the radio went out altogether after her last message for whatever reason. Of course then, she can't announce a different plan to anyone. Even if they were certain that the 157/337 line would take them to Howland, it doesn't follow to me that it would then aim them close enough to Gardner that they would certainly sight it, nor do they know that. At least not on my not very detailed map. In your book, the Lockheed engineers seem to think she had a lot more flying time than was the general belief. Enough to get to the Gilberts, by their calculations. The search by the Itasca and Swan was cursory, if not superficial. There were no planes sent out to search the Gilberts one by one. As you have said yourself, there is no way we can know what AE and FN actually did no matter how loopy it may sound, you can't completely rule out anything physically possible. This may sound silly, but what I did is looked for a Gilbert Island that sounded like NY or New York City in Betty's account, and voila, Nonouti. I looked that up. It was and is always populated. But there is an islet, Noumatong, which is now a bird sanctuary and was most likely deserted in 1937. It's miles from the principal towns. I won't go into point by point questions I have about the Niku Hyp. at this time and how they fit into this Hyp. of mine. I propose  they could have been unfortunate enough to wind up there. See, I didn't abandon my ship yet.

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Zach Reed

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #52 on: June 05, 2011, 07:19:00 PM »

Coming in on the middle of your discussion (haven't had time to bactrack through all four pages), but your description of Noumitang sounds a lot like the radio account of the woman from West Texas, whose son later traveled in the Gilberts and came back with a story that he linked to AE. I think that was on another thread recently?

Something about her and FN landing on a small island that the natives visited to hunt & fish; the natives eventually found them...one died, the other stayed or was picked up...something like that.


I'm not voting for your hypo; it just caught me attention.


My own leading hypo is the same as Ric and gang; my runner-up is that they crashed/landed in the water just off the Seven Site, never left that site, and were dead within days.
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Ric Gillespie

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #53 on: June 05, 2011, 07:36:34 PM »

I wasn't expecting anyone to take me too seriously,

Good.  If you change your mind try to find some evidence to back up your hypothesis.
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david alan atchason

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #54 on: June 05, 2011, 07:54:42 PM »

My methodology is this. When I first found TIGHAR, I was fascinated that I had come upon the answer to the AE mystery. After some time, I found I was questioning some of the evidence. The Niku Hypo started to seem unsatisfying. My quibbling questions on this forum went largely unaddressed. Sometimes I was mistaken. But I wanted a Hypo. that "fit like a glove". Through serendipity I found it. Yes, I am discounting evidence of TIGHAR's  that I find not 100% convincing. But that doesn't necessarily make me wrong. I am taking their evidence and putting my interpretation on it. I will take the opportunity to make my comments after I have scrutinized each point so that I don't look silly by misquoting the evidence. Or more silly than necessary.
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Zach Reed

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #55 on: June 05, 2011, 07:56:22 PM »

Oh, here I found it in the archives: the two part letter from Mabel Duncklee (Larremore), who was a young mother in West Texas at the time.

In her second letter, she mentions that he son was stationed in the South Pacific during the war and afterwards. At some point, he went to an island where the natives showed him a grave that was supposedly AE's. They said she and FN had crash landed on a small island where the natives go to fish. FN was dead, and the natives brought back AE and whatever they could strip from the plane. AE "was transported to the [native's home island], where she recovered from her inujuries, and was on the island for quite awhile before she recovered and passed away."

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Zach Reed

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #56 on: June 05, 2011, 07:59:11 PM »

Whoops, that should read "was on the island quite awhile before she became ill and passed away".


A connection? Who knows...


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david alan atchason

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #57 on: June 05, 2011, 07:59:45 PM »

By the way, I am not hiding out. I have tried to put my photo on my profile just now, but the screen says "File too big" or it just doesn't work. I am using a standard thumbnail from my "pictures file".
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david alan atchason

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #58 on: June 05, 2011, 08:12:48 PM »

Zach, this is what I mean about the evidence. My thinking this afternoon was this: The Islanders on Niku seemed to have a penchant for collecting pieces of airplanes. Now it has been said that there was pieces of metal probably from a B-24 as well as pieces consistent with AE's plane. Obviously, some pieces were transported there from away. I propose that the pieces consistent with Amelia's plane were her plane transported there by islanders who probably came from Nonouti. They didn't come from Niku because there was no plane on Niku. I could elaborate on the question of AE's plane parts found on Niku does not prove her plane crashed or landed on Niku. Do you see how my discounting works in this case?
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Zach Reed

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Re: Sunrise Encounter
« Reply #59 on: June 05, 2011, 08:55:37 PM »

If you do a search, it becomes immediately clear that Nonouti is one giant flat, occassionally punctured by a large grove of trees. Beautiful sandy beaches that seemingly stretch on forever, in large places barely covered by water at low tide. Google Earth has a nice picture of Noumatong Island...at least, the half that isn't covered by a cloud.


I wonder how much tourism there is there. There are some pics by a German gentleman of the coast of the island, and a recent fishing expedition that claims to be the first tourists to Nonouti (but their story sounds like the standard "real experience" canned tourist adventure that assures they were anything but the first).

As we're lazying about on a Sunday afternoon, I remember that somewhere, back there in the dust, was another story related by Ric or one of the other TIGHAR folks, about having a drink with a Navy pilot who talked about seeing an old WWII era plane crashed on beach of some no-name island, but when Gardner was described to him, the guy got confused and embarrassed and said he must remember wrong.


Who knows...probably nothing left to find at this point anyway. Obviously, if there was a plane there, then the German photographer would have seen it while walking around the beach shooting pictures.

I stick with the official theory of TIGHAR, but this is interesting to think about.
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