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    Re: jet fighter celestial nav
    From: Robert Gainer
    Date: 2006 Apr 13, 18:04 -0400

    Maybe the method is so loose that it doesn?t matter. After all, a plane 
    traveling at hundreds of miles an hour and thousands of feet high has a 
    different requirement for precision then a boat that need to find a point 
    they can only see from a few miles away.
    Robert Gainer
    > From: Paul Hirose 
    > Date: 2006/04/13 Thu PM 05:38:26 EDT
    > Subject: jet fighter celestial nav
    > U.S. Air Force Manual 51-40, "Air Navigation" (1955 edition), which I
    > got on eBay, has a chapter on fighter plane celestial navigation.
    > "The space limitations of fighter cockpits preclude the making of the
    > detailed computations required for conventional celestial nevigation.
    > With this technique, there is no plotting and very little computation
    > required in the air. All that need be done is to make an observation and
    > compare the sextant readings with precomputed values for the time of the
    > observation..."
    > The celestial body must be either within 15� of the course line or
    > within 5� of a perpendicular to the course line. At pre-planned times
    > you shoot one body and compare observed vs. predicted altitude. There is
    > no attempt to take fixes; you check the progress of the flight with
    > speed lines and course lines.
    > "During the celestial observation the aircraft must be stable. In a
    > single place aircraft a dependable auto-pilot is an absolute necessity."
    > I wonder how they corrected for refraction through the canopy. The
    > manual doesn't say.

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