Celestial Navigation A Complete Home Study Course Second Edition
by David Burch
We are pleased to say that after ten more years of using this text we do not find reason to change the basic approach and methods of the teaching. We still use most of the same examples, which are now quite old, but that is the beauty of celestial navigation. It has not changed, so we do not benefit in any way from making all new examples, which would bring with them more chance of error in a book of many numbers.
We have, however, notably improved and expanded the book. Each section has been updated and reformatted for a clearer presentation, often in response to student questions over the years. New graphics have been added and older ones all updated. There is much new content in the text, especially in the In-Depth chapter, including more detailed discussion of the sailings and more background on the principles. New sections were added on general ocean navigation and optimizing the fixes. We have also updated the electronic navigation section, as most ocean navigators will also be using other tools besides celestial.
This book covers how to find position at sea from timed sextant sights of the sun, moon, stars, and planets plus other routine and special procedures of safe, efficient offshore navigation. No previous navigation experience is required and the only math involved is arithmetic. This is a practical course which includes clear explanations of how it works and how to do it well. Plus this course includes other crucial factors of ocean navigation besides just finding out where you are from the stars such as logbook procedures, dead reckoning, error analysis, route planning, etc. At the end of this course, you will be ready for ocean navigation.
The course is designed around a unique work form that makes all sextant sights essentially the same. The form and procedures have been developed and tested with the help of tens of thousands of students over the past 25 years.
You will soon be doing the sextant-sight reductions of the sun, moon, stars, and planets with little more than a glance at the work form. It reminds you what to do at each step and then carries you to the next. Paperback, 294 pages, 8.25" x 11", many illustrations, Starpath Publications, 2015.