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    Carry on, Mr. Bowditch
    From: Dave Weilacher
    Date: 2003 Jan 15, 10:51 -0800

    I just finished reading this fictionalized biography about Nathanial Bowditch.
    It leads me to believe that chronometers were prohibitively expensive into the
    1820's.  Bacause of this, lunars were still in common use.
    According to the story, until Mr. Bowditch invented the three star lunar, a
    lunar consisted of waiting for a known star to occult the moon.
    I understood little of this.  Would anyone care to explain what this means in
    detail?  What purpose does a sextant serve in this 'occulting' lunar process.
    It also went on about a star had to be below the moon and not above it for
    this procedure to work. (I may remember this backwards)
    A problem with fictionalized biographies is telling where the bio stops and
    the fiction starts.
    Dave Weilacher
    .US Coast Guard licensed captain
    .    #889968
    .ASA Instructor Evaluator & Celestial
    .    Nav. Instructor #990800
    .IBM AS400 RPG contract programmer

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