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    Re: Working a lunar
    From: Henry Halboth
    Date: 2007 Sep 21, 04:45 GMT

    George,

    Obviously, there are emergency situations wherein one might well wind up adrift without pants on, let alone with navigation gear and publications. It might well be entirely appropriate to question where the pencil, paper, sextant, or other equally simplistic necessity might come from. The answer is of course in advance preparation seeking to cover all bases, and also in praying that in the pinch all might wind up in the lifeboat intact and useable.

    As respects tables of Lunar Distances, I have been using beautifully posted tables at http://www.math.uu.nl/people/wepster/tables.html which have been well put together and can be printed off for a number of years, as well as for any particular voyage time frame. No offense to Frank who also publishes appropriate tables, actually at more frequent intervals.

    While again on the subject, I see little use to the so called approximate methods of clearing the distance. I find a pure trigonometrical solution, espescially by use of the haversine formula, to be more understandable and certainly with fewer corrections - I have yet to test the difference in accuracy as between 5-place and 6-place logarithms and have not been able to locate any 6-place natural haversine tables. As you have seveal times indicated, the solution is actually quite simple by calculator, assuming one has the calculator in the postulated emergency.

    Regards,

    Henry


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