The subject requires some comfort with the basic concepts of navigation, but the prospective navigator only needs to know how to add and subtract either times or angles. Lucid and well-paced, Celestial Navigation starts with fundamentals and definitions which ensure that a motivated student need not bring anything more to the table than his or her willingness to master to subject. Richly illustrated, it includes a chapter over forty pages of review exercises covering all topics.
The cleverness of many of the concepts, explained here, will bring about great intellectual joy and satisfaction. Whether you are a recreational sailor or an individual pursuing professional certification as a navigator, Celestial Navigation will teach you what you need to know.
Celestial Navigation Exercises for Class and Home Study was designed to facilitate the work of instructors using the free PowerPoint slide presentation available at CelestialNavigationBook.com. This exercise manual, available in hard copy and in PDF format for tablets, reproduces the questions posed at regular intervals throughout the slide presentation; it provides the work-forms guiding the calculations, and the solutions. Students taking a course from an instructor who follows the slide presentation will normally have the associated course book Celestial Navigation using the Sight Reduction Tables Pub. No. 249. In order to facilitate the download process, the free version of the exercise manual (available for download from CelestialNavigationBook.com), includes neither the Almanac nor the Sight Reduction Tables required for the calculations because these tables are identical to the ones in the course book. This complete version of the exercise manual, with all the required data tables in the appendix, will thus be useful mostly to navigators who do not have the course book but wish to practice on their own, as well as to students who follow the presentation and have the course book but do not wish to download and print 140 pages of questions and answers.
The book is copiously illustrated with graphics which explain chart projections, scales and symbols, and describe lights and other navigation aids. It demystifies the True, Magnetic and Compass Norths as well as problems of time, speed and distances, and explains how to plot courses and take bearings, or draw regular and advanced Lines of Position using the international system of labeling.
The book further clarifies the use of vectors to easily determine the impact of a current on the boat speed and direction, and goes on to show how to evaluate tides and currents. The final sections describe the use of GPS and electronic charts, highlighting their limitations. Additional notes and explanations are given in the areas where students traditionally experience difficulties, as well as supplementary examples and exercises.
The companion book, Coastal Navigation Exercises, offers all the exercises needed for practice.
The data tables needed to do the exercises are given in the Appendix of this manual. Most of the exercises require the Canadian marine chart CHS 3463, Strait of Georgia, Southern Portion, published under the authority of Canadian Hydrographic Services and available through chart retailers. A list of over 500 CHS retailers in Canada, the US, the UK, and Japan is available from www.charts.gc.ca/charts-cartes/dealerdepositaire-eng.asp.
The exercises are grouped in six sessions corresponding to the six sessions of the Power Point presentation. This presentation can be freely downloaded from the web site www.MarineNavigationBooks.com, and reproduces the images illustrating the course book (Costal Navigation for Class and Home Study) as well as the exercises in this manual. Each question is on one slide, and the answer on the next one.