Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Discussion about wrecks and losses as well as historic sites in the Pacific.

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Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Fri Nov 17, 2017 2:19 pm

The old German "main" dock was located about 3/4 mile south of the current dock. And I agree with you that the AE photo was taken from the center dock. But that dock is not the old German dock circa early1900's. The remnants of the old dock described by the PIM article about the royal visit goes out into deeper water-40 to 60 feet at dockside. The azimuth points across the lagoon at 311 degrees true. You can see this on close up using the 2014 GE image. The underwater pilings over 120 years old are still visible and show the orientation of the old dock.

311 degrees intercepts land across the lagoon 16 miles away. The 235 degree intercept of the existing dock and it's earlier 1936 version is at 9 miles.
The AE photo could not have been taken from the old german dock as the earth curvature hides any land features at 311º/16 miles. The 235/9 mile intercept, does show the upper portion of the land/vegetation. That is shown in the AE photo.

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I'll post a closeup of those dock pilings from 2014 GE later on.

Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:21 pm

Here is that 2014 GE close up of the old dock pilings. Wooden above water but concrete below the water. A 1978 environmental impact statement made note of the long lasting pilings. It was an alternate site under consideration in 1978 for the subsequent dock refurbishment done sometime in the 80's.

The Oceania and the Germania both blue water merchant ships served Jaluit with passengers, cargo, and mail in the early 1900's. The ships required the 40-60 feet at dockside. The much smaller pier built by Reimer for the Japanese in 1936 was in shallow water 15-20 feet and never had large vessels dockside. Larger ships off loaded from anchor further out in the lagoon. In the AE photo, the Koshu Maru stands away at anchor in the lagoon.

The Pacific Islands Monthly article tells the tale. The Japanese visitors used the old German pier in the 1935 visit. The AE photo could not have been taken there because of the distance to land, looking straight away from the pier, is too far; land/ trees hidden by earth curvature.

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Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Sun Dec 03, 2017 4:59 pm

The circumstantial evidence continues to mount that the ONI photo is authentic; i.e. taken in 1937 after a new dock was built by the Japanese (Marshallese- Remier's oral history) and jutting out into the lagoon some 90º counter clockwise to the old German main dock used by the Japanese royal party in 1935. No land can be seen when looking directly out from the old dock. But land can be seen from the "new" 1936 dock. Evidence gathered by R Martini and others indicate the positive identification of the Koshu Maru in the photo and that the ship was at Jaluit in mid July, 1937. While the evidence does not prove absolutly that Amelia and Fred are in the photo, it does prove that the dock photo was taken after the 1935 Japanese royal visit. While the evidence is not absolute, it could lead one to think the debunk evidence- the 1935 travelogue- could be subtrafuge planted decades ago by criminals attempting to hide all evidence of crimes. Kidnap on the high seas is a crime.Once the aircraft at Orona is recovered, more evidence will be available.

Unlike other Japanese capture theories- Amelia was not a spy; the Orona theory postulates that the fliers were taken in order to facilitate a hoax spy mission by the Japanese Army in order to move the Japanese Navy to a first strike strategy-strike Singapore and Pearl Harbor.

Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Thu Dec 07, 2017 2:32 pm

The mental condition of perceiving the human face or other known object in an otherwise random image is termed pareidolia. Scientist call perceiving a face or object in a cloud formation, the random pattern of a tree bark, etc. normal. And it’s quite normal to say “that looks like Abe Lincoln’s face” while observing a large cloud. But “looking like” and “measuring exactly like” are entirely different.

Pareidolia is often used to discredit the Orona image. But taking and recording exacting measurements exactly like the L10E is not imagination. The Google Earth 2006 image measurements, when divided by the water index of refraction (1.33) yield the exacting measurements of the L10E. Using the ray tracing diagram as a tool, the counter argument is made that in order for that to occur, considering that the satellite may be hundreds of miles above the surface of the lagoon, the aircraft would necessarily be thousands of feet below the surface. An impossible condition as the depth is but 35 feet. What this counter argument fails to incorporate is the manner in which telescopic cameras work. The normal configuration of telescopes results in the virtual image focused at infinity. A good way to understand this is the informative site SCUBAGEEK.com. http://scubageek.com/articles/wwwbigr.html. Here scubageek lays out the lens magnification (big M) formula for underwater to air situation that pertains to scuba divers as they observe through the glass of the facemask. It also is applicable to the satellite with the telescopic camera recording the underwater object.

M =m{[ (1+ (d+R)/D]/[1+m(d+R)/D]}

Little m is the refractive index of water 1.33. Note that little d is a large value-the satellite may be several hundred miles above the lagoon surface. And because the telescope focuses the image at infinity, D is very large-as large as it can get-∞ (infinity). The formula reduces to M=1.33. It’s how telescopes work.

So a measured value of 52’ nose to tail yields 39’ (52/1.33=39). The L10E is 38’ 8” nose to tail; x to x in the image

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Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:49 pm

In addition to the GE measurements indicating that the plane is the L10E, a symmetry analysis confirms that the plane is the L10E. The analysis is simple and performed by identifying seven points on the airframe image and making GE measurements between those points; seven points allow 21 measurements (7!=6+5+4+3+2+1=21). Those seven points A-G are noted on the attached images of the lagoon photo and the L10E sketch (A-F). Similar points are chosen on the overhead sketch/drawing/photograph of the L10E aircraft and the 21 ruler measurements recorded. In both cases, the 21 measurements allow 210 dimentionless ratios to be created by dividing each measurement by all others (21!= 20+19+18+17......+3+2+1= 210). The ratios are dimensionless and thus scaling is not a consideration in the analysis. The ratios are then compared; photo vs L10E drawing. In most cases the ratios are the same within a small margin of error; about 5% average. A few of those ratios comparisons are shown on the attached sketch image. Some are exactly the same while a few are off enough to result in the overall 5% average difference. This is expected as the airframe does not sit squarely on the lagoon bottom as it does in the overhead view while the aircraft sits on the hanger floor. The number of equavalant ratios can be increased by identifying additional airframe components and employing those measurements in the analysis; example: add the leading edge of the windscreen and the total number of matching ratio comparisons increases to 377.
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Tom Maxwell
2nd Lieutenant
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2016 11:54 am

Re: Plane in the lagoon at Orona

Post by Tom Maxwell » Wed Feb 14, 2018 4:14 pm

In my Dec 7 post, I failed to mention that a professor of optic science at one of the nation's leading universities has verified the magnification of M=1.33 for this type of satellite/underwater photo. I had a e-mail conversation with him in June 2017.

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