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    Re: Carry on, Mr. Bowditch
    From: Dave Weilacher
    Date: 2003 Jan 15, 16:58 -0800

    I didn't mean to contend he had invented the lunar.  My understanding was that
    he invented the concept of taking a lunar without having to wait for this
    occulting thing.
    Moore's nautical almanac would have been necessary to take a lunar even if it
    were only accomplished during an occulting situation.
    I also gathered that Bowditch identified over 8000 errors in Moore's tables.
    Please allow me to restate my question.  I really don't understand this
    occulting business.
    Would you please explain it.
    Additionally, I have followed most of the lunar distance threads avidly. It
    has all been discussed at a level beyond my understanding.
    I keep hoping that someone will start over with truly basic description of the
    process.  I'm missing it badly.
    On Wed, 15 Jan 2003 19:34:09 -0500 Fred Hebard  wrote:
    > The Nautical Almanac was first published in the
    > 1760s, about 40 years
    > prior to Bowditch's time.  It was published
    > primarily to facilitate
    > the computation of time by observation of
    > distances between the moon
    > and other celestial objects, the classical
    > lunar so much discussed on
    > this list.  And the sextant was invented
    > primarily to perform the
    > measurements of those lunar distances to the
    > precision required.  A
    > sextant is not needed to observe occultations.
    > So Bowditch did not
    > invent the lunar.  But, according to the book
    > on navigation that
    > bears his name, he did markedly simplify the
    > calculations to where
    > they could be performed by ordinary seamen
    > rather than only by those
    > with extremely high proficiency in mathematics.
    >  Lunars for the rest
    > of us.
    > I don't know what a three-star lunar is, but
    > others on this list may
    > be able to enlighten us.
    > Fred
    > --
    > --------------------------------------------------------------------------
    > Frederick V. Hebard, PhD
    > Email: mailto:Fred@acf.org
    > Staff Pathologist, Meadowview Research Farms
    > Web: http://www.acf.org
    > American Chestnut Foundation
    > Phone: (276) 944-4631
    > 14005 Glenbrook Ave.
    > Fax: (276) 944-0934
    > Meadowview, VA 24361
    Dave Weilacher
    .US Coast Guard licensed captain
    .    #889968
    .ASA Instructor Evaluator & Celestial
    .    Nav. Instructor #990800
    .IBM AS400 RPG contract programmer

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