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    Re: Polar navigation
    From: Frank Reed
    Date: 2009 Oct 18, 17:44 -0700

    For the northeast and northwest passages through the Arctic for trade, which 
    look likely to be open in summers for at least a decade if not permanently, I 
    don't think there's any real reason to switch to a different projection since 
    both of the routes are below 85 degrees north.  
    On a related note, the recent discussion of submarines (and my own visits to 
    thirteen museum subs in the past ten weeks) got me reading about the INS 
    aboard the submarine Nautilus during its visit to the North Pole under the 
    ice in 1958. One article in a popular magazine mentioned that they used 
    non-standard coordinates for the passage, rotated 90 degrees from the 
    standard lat/lon grid so that the coordinate poles were on the Earth's 
    equator --thus no annoying coordinate singularity at the actual North Pole.
    PS: Interesting trivia: the USN's own inertial navigation project did not 
    produce a useful system until years later (so, for example, USS Triton was 
    primarily navigated by dead reckoning plus frequent celestial navigation 
    during its submerged circum-navigation in 1960). For Nautilus, Skate, and 
    maybe a few other early nuclear submarines outfitted for operations under the 
    Arctic ice, the INS was actually taken almost unmodified from the cancelled 
    USAF Navaho missile program.
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