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    Pilots and Mariners
    From: Chuck Griffiths
    Date: 2002 Feb 7, 16:42 -0500

    All the talk about differences in terminology between sailors and flyers
    reminded me of a couple other funny things pilots do (myself included). Most
    pilots flying around the states plotting their "courses" on aeronautical charts
    are plotting rhumb lines on Mercator projections. Pilots, for the most part
    aren't taught to distinguish between rhumb line courses and great circle
    courses. The funny thing is, they generally follow radio navigation devices that
    guide airplanes over great circle courses. Good marine navigators, of course,
    know that a radio bearing to a distant non-directional radio beacon is the
    initial bearing of the great circle track to that aid, and plot it accordingly.
    These day few pilots worry about errors of that magnitude and draw radio
    bearings as straight lines on Mercator charts. Once upon a time however, flight
    navigators were men with navigational skill to be reckoned with. Those of you
    that are pilots might be interested to review the requirements for the flight
    navigator certificate.(Appendix A of Part 63). Here's a
    link:http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/cfrhtml_00/Title_14/14cfr63_00.html
    
    Chuck
    
    
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