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    Re: On polar nav
    From: Walter Guinon
    Date: 2002 Sep 11, 18:16 -0700

    Is the behavior of a pendulum a useful indication of nearness to the pole?
    --- Peter Fogg  wrote:
    >  Am reading 'Robert E. Peary at the North Pole' A Report to the National
    > Geographic Society by The Foundation for the Promotion of the Art of
    > Navigation.
    > It has, not unexpectedly, much data on the navigation involved. There is
    > a map showing his track, which indicates he over-ran his latitude by a
    > few miles (kept going north until he was heading south again) and the
    > implication is that this ensured he reached the pole, given the
    > limitations of his instruments - within about 5 miles.
    > This raises a question, which was put as an assertion by a 'reliable
    > source' - that the thing to do, and the thing done, was to set out from
    > the polar camp and follow a circle around it, so that the actual pole,
    > if a little way off, would be encompassed and any subsequent doubts
    > about exact postion would
    > be laid to rest. The book doesn't mention this, although the track on
    > the map indicates Peary was off a little to one side (to the left while
    > facing north).
    > Some time ago there was some discussion on the list about polar
    > navigation. Amundsen apparently camped and measured the sun's altitude
    > thoughout the day. Although I have no reason to doubt that these
    > measurements were taken with great care surely there would be a
    > practical limit to just how precise a spot they could indicate.
    > Does anybody know whether Amundsen did send out a party to circle his
    > polar camp? I know Scott found Amundsen's black tent and accepted this
    > as the pole, so I guess he didn't describe any circles.
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