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NOVA: B-29 Frozen In Time

Airs Tuesday, July 20, 2010 at 8 p.m. on KPBS TV

Black and white photo of a B-29 in flight.

Credit: public domain

Above: Black and white photo of a B-29 in flight.

In 1947, a B-29, on a secret reconnaissance mission over Russia, became lost over the North Pole. The pilot made an emergency landing in Greenland, and the crew was rescued. This program follows pilot Darryl Greenamyer as he heads an expedition into the Arctic to rescue the downed B-29. Battling unpredictable weather, an unforgiving landscape, limited equipment, illness and fatigue, his team rushes to refurbish the plane before the harsh winter sets in.

The second half of the program focuses on the "Titanic's" sister ship, the "Brittanic." Few people realize that the "Titanic" had two nearly identical sister ships, the "Olympic" and the 'Britannic." The "Olympic" had a successful career as a liner until she broke up in 1935, but the "Britannic" met a fate almost as unlucky as the "Titanic's." Serving as a hospital ship in the Aegean, it was either torpedoed or struck a mine on November 21, 1916, and sank within an hour, yet only thirty of the crew of 1,100 died. NOVA joins the search for the wreck of the "Britannic" and explores the evidence of its dramatic end.

Video Excerpt: NOVA: B-29 Frozen In Time

"B-29 Frozen in Time" follows Darryl Greenamyer and his crew as they try to retrieve an almost intact B-29 from the Arctic Circle. The airplane crash-landed nearly 50 years earlier during a secret mission for the United States. The pilots survived the crash and were rescued, but the B-29 was left in the harsh and unforgiving climate 250 miles north of Thule, Greenland.

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