A Community Devoted to the Preservation and Practice of Celestial Navigation and Other Methods of Traditional Wayfinding
From: David Pike
Date: 2016 Sep 13, 02:03 -0700
The Amelia Earhart disappearance has raised its head again recently both on Fox News on 10th Sep http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/09/10/new-evidence-reportedly-indicates-amelia-earhardt-survived-crash.html and the Times newspaper on 12th Sep. The information from TIGHAR includes the curious statement "Earhart’s plane was last seen on radar on July 2, 1937" and "Gillespie said that from the time the plane vanished off radar on July 2 to July 6, there were more than 100 radio transmissions from Earhart calling for help".
We are regretably used to seeing statements about aircraft disappearing from radar in the 2000’s, but in July 1937 radar was still in very much an experimental state and in use in just a few countries. If it was available at all, it would have been a very fuzzy "A scope" display probably only in use in experimental establishments. One is tempted to ask who saw the aircraft and on which radar equipment? Did USCGC Itasca have radar?? Very unlikely. Was this perhaps a dangerous popularisation and updating of the facts to make them more understandable to the average reader, even if completely wrong? Why not just say "vanished" ? DaveP