Amelia Earhart Breakthrough

September 4, 2023
Photo of the Pacific Ocean

There is an object in the photo that appears to be a Lockheed Electra engine cowling.

Executive director of The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR), Ric Gillespie, on a potential breakthrough in the nearly 90-year search for Amelia Earhart’s plane; TIGHAR leads the Earhart Project, which has been investigating Earhart’s disappearance.

Why It Matters: A 2009 photograph from an expedition in the Pacific Ocean (near Nikumaroro Island) appears to show a cowling (cowling = cover of an aircraft engine) "buried underwater that could have been part of the boundary-breaking aviator’s plane …” (New York Post). The photo is being analyzed by a specialist; if the engine cover were Earhart's, it would not give an explanation as to why the plane crashed, but would "dispel Gillespie's theory that Earhart and [her navigator Fred] Noonan landed and eventually died on Nikumaroro," where no hard evidence of Earhart or Noonan has ever been found, the New York Post explains.

Another possible breakthrough emerges in search for Amelia Earhart's plane–86 years after aviator vanished: report

by Jenna Lee,

ImageImageImageImage