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    Lunars for beginners: was- telegraphic longitude article
    From: George Huxtable
    Date: 2003 Dec 27, 10:48 +0000

    Brooke Clarke wrote-
    >While reading a number of papers about the Transit Satellite navigation
    >system I learned that the main method being proposed while Harrison was
    >working on his chronometers was what's now called Lunars.  I don't know
    >anything about Lunars, but surmise that they can be done without a
    >chronometer, is that the case?
    Fred Hebard answered that question.
    If you want to find out more about lunars (full name, the lunar-distance
    method), which continued in use by many mariners for 100 years or more
    after Harrison's time, there isn't much published information to be had.
    Best that I know of is the chapter by Derek Howse, on pages 149 to 166 of
    "The Quest for Longitude", ed. Andrewes, published by Harvard University.
    This is a big and expensive book, the proceedings of a conference, perhaps
    best read in a library. Mostly about chronometer methods, but interesting
    reading throughout, and superbly illustrated. Highly recommended, by me.
    Otherwise, on the web, Arthur Pearson has put together a website which is
    intended to provide information about lunars to anyone who seeks it. It has
    beginners in the art, such as you, particularly in mind. Try it out at-
    If Arthur's list doesn't answer your questions directly, it provides
    pointers to other sites which will contain as much information as you need
    (and perhaps more than you want). Try it out.
    And if those suggestions don't help, just ask your questions of the list.
    "Newbie" questions can often be stimulating. Members are usually happy to
    respond. The main problem you are likely to find is receiving half-a-dozen
    answere, mutually contradictory.
    If you intend to follow the details of a lot of the discussion in the Nav-l
    list, you will find a basic understanding of at least the principles of
    lunars comes in handy. Many listmembers take an interest in the historical
    (and complex technical) aspects of lunars, so you will find it a subject
    that recurs frequently.
    contact George Huxtable by email at george@huxtable.u-net.com, by phone at
    01865 820222 (from outside UK, +44 1865 820222), or by mail at 1 Sandy
    Lane, Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxon OX13 5HX, UK.

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