Deep Sea Expedition Group Says It May Have Found Amelia Earhart’s Missing Plane

A deep-sea expedition group says that it has discovered what appears to be Amelia Earhart’s plane, which went missing after the famed pilot crashed somewhere in the South Pacific during her flight around the world.

Deep Sea Vision, a marine-robotics company, announced on Sunday that it has located what it believes to be Earhart’s Lockheed Electra, which went missing in 1937 after taking off from Papua New Guinea. Deep Sea Vision says that it believes Earhart and her navigator got off track because they forgot to take into account the International Date Line leading them to be off target and crash into the ocean.

“This is maybe the most exciting thing I’ll ever do in my life,” Deep See Vision CEO Tim Romeo told The Wall Street Journal of a return trip to survey the wreckage. “I feel like a 10-year-old going on a treasure hunt.” 

The group posted photos of the wreck on Sunday, announcing news of the find.

“On July 2, 1937, Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan took off from Papua New Guinea, nearing the end of their record-setting journey around the world never to be seen again. Until today,” Deep Sea Vision said. 

Romeo, a former U.S. Air Force intelligence officer, said that the plane appears to be in good condition despite its being in the ocean for over 80 years.

“We always felt that she [Earhart] would have made every attempt to land the aircraft gently on the water, and the aircraft signature that we see in the sonar image suggests that may be the case,” he said. “We’re thrilled to have made this discovery at the tail end of our expedition, and we plan to bring closure to a great American story.”

The discovery of the craft was made after the group searched over 5,200 miles of ocean over a 90 day period. The group used the HUGIN 6000, an autonomous underwater vehicle, to search massive portions of the ocean at a time.

Dorothy Cochrane, aeronautics curator at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, said that she was looking into Deep Sea Vision’s findings.

“We are intrigued with DSV’s initial imagery and believe it merits another expedition in the continuing search for Amelia Earhart’s aircraft near Howland Island,” she said.

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