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Waitt Institute

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Long, Elgen M. and Marie K.

Amelia Earhart - Mystery Solved (Simon & Schuster, 1999)

Long’s research is by far, the most complete, comprehensive, and accurate work done to locate this accident aircraft. Documentation of the entire mission is very thorough, and where literary license is taken to craft the publication, it does not materially detract from the research work.

Rather than reiterate Long’s extensive analysis, the following are significant points as they relate to our work in review, analysis, and aircraft localization:

Valid assessment of headwind at 23 knots, 26.5 mph throughout mission.

We investigate reduced headwind and increased crosswind effects on final position.

These effects are contained in the Primary Search Grids.

Flight path Lae-Howland passes through three points that are updated.

No evidence the flight was at the point reported at 0519 GMT.

Long’s path through this point may simply conform to tradition.

No evidence the flight passed directly over the SS Myrtlebank.

This point is 40-60nm north of track from Lae to Howland.

There is no evidence the flight did not overfly SS Myrtlebank, and the final End-of-Navigation point(s) should not be affected by the small lateral track deviation abeam Nauru Island, if indeed, AE was slightly closer to Nauru and did fly closer to SS Myrtlebank.

No evidence the flight was north of track, or Howland, at any time

This conclusion appears to have come from CDR Thompson of Itasca

Distance and time averages are valid assessments, remarkably accurate for the analysis methods used, and comprise a very credible basis for track plot and terminal area arrival at Howland.

Validates an arrival near Howland with insufficient fuel to exit the Howland area

Long creates a reference to “Itasca standard time (IST)” in addition to the already confusing Howland Standard Time and GMT references.

Long advances a compounding 10% of navigation distance error model, that, while somewhat subjective and lacking of a more rigorous analytical conclusion, is a reasonable approach to a location methodology.