On July 3rd, 2012, Discovery and The International Group for Historic Aircraft Recovery (TIGHAR) departed from Honolulu on a mission to search for the Holy Grail of aviation history: evidence of Amelia Earhart’s long-lost Lockheed Electra aircraft. PremieringSaturday, February 16 at 8 p.m. ET/10 p.m. PT, Discovery World presents the one-hour special, FINDING AMELIA EARHART: MYSTERY SOLVED?. Working with TIGHAR, Discovery deployed cutting-edge technologies to reach back into the past and solve one of the last great mysteries of the 20th century.
A former nurses’ aide at a Canadian military hospital during the First World War,Amelia Earhart went on to set – and break – multiple flying records, including being the first woman to cross the Atlantic (as co-pilot in the 1928 flight from Newfoundland to Wales); and in 1932 Earhart was the first woman – and second person – to successfully execute a solo flight across the Atlantic; she also was the first person to ever fly solo across the Pacific, from Hawaii to California, in 1935. A pioneer in both flight and feminism, Earhart’s ultimate – and final – challenge would come as she set out to become the first woman to fly around the world in 1937. Her plane was lost in the south-Pacific Ocean — only 11,000km short of her goal – launching the most extensive search and rescue operation in U.S. naval history to-date.
An enduring mystery, even 75 years later, the on-board activities and underwater findings of the Niku VII7 expedition were captured exclusively by Discovery last summer. Over the course of the 26-day expedition, the 18-person research crew aimed to locate, identify, and photograph any and all surviving aircraft wreckage that they believed to be in the deep waters surrounding Nikumaroro, an uninhabited coral atoll in the southwestern-Pacific Republic of Kiribati.