Rate of Change Methods in Astronomical Surveying

by Raphael F. Rish, Sr. Lect.; Dept. of Civ. Engrg., Univ. of Tasmania, Hobart, Australia,

Serial Information: Journal of the Surveying and Mapping Division, 1980, Vol. 106, Issue 1, Pg. 137-141

Document Type: Journal Paper


A method is described whereby longitude, latitude and azimuth can be obtained by taking sights on the sun at short timed intervals. Both rate of change of altitude with time and rate of change of bearing with altitude can be used to calculate the observer's position and the direction of the meridian. A calculator can be programmed with monthly data from the Star Almanac for Land Surveyors to correct for refraction and carry out the necessary calculations from the raw observations. No previous knowledge of position is required.

Subject Headings: Astronomy | Surveying methods | Land surveys | Azimuth

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