I’ve copied the last two paragraphs of LaPook’s “, Navigation to Dakar below:
“But what if they had unusual winds or the plane flew at a different speed than planned or Earhart
didn’t stay on the correct heading? Well all those things were taken into account when figuring
the band of uncertainty so none of those things change the conclusion that there was less than one
chance in a million that they hit the coast like Earhart said they did based on a review of
Noonan’s chart work.
If the math isn’t convincing then lets look at it with just common sense. Noonan had just missed
his landfall on the continent of Africa by more than two hundred miles and now Earhart was
going to have him navigate her to a one mile long island in the middle of the Pacific. As my kid
would say, “I don’t think so!”
The first Amelia Earhart Commemorative World Flight was successfully completed in 1967 by Pilot Ann Pellegreno. A Lockheed Electra was rebuilt to match Earharts, except that the smaller Wasp Junior engines were used in 1967 flight. The plane work was performed by Lee Koepke, who went along on the World Flight. Pellegreno’s entire crew were top experts in their fields with navigator William L. Polhemous being probably the best. He was the founder and president of Polhemous Navigation services back in 1967. He performed periscopic sextant sightings every half hour along with wind directons and speed throughout the night before arriving at Howland the following morning. After the Commemorative flight he became president of the Institute of Navigation for several years. I have a copy of his Amelia Earhart report to the I.O.N., which is hard to get. If you’re interested in it I can send it to you, but it will have to be in hard-copy form via the snail-mail. We would have to exchange regular Email addresses to make this work.
Of course, I am interested in your opinions regarding the LaPook paragraphs above and the Polhemous Report it you decide to review it.