US Army rediscovers celestial navigation - 20 October 2014

After GPS totally displaced most other forms of navigation, there is a growing awareness that GPS (and other systems like GLONASS, Galileo, Beidou etc) is very susceptible to jamming and other forms of interference. So the US army are turning the clock back, to include celestial navigation in their laser targetting systems.

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WinAstro Software

Taking a sight with a sextantWinAstro Software

WinAstro takes the tedium of sight reducion calculations out of astro navigation (also known as celestial navigation). You can use WinAstro to plan your sight, then take your fix with your sextant, and in seconds have a Line of Position (LOP) calculated, without the need for any almanacs or tables.

WinAstro lets you enjoy the satrisfaction of astro navigation without the need to buy annual sight reduction tables or to get bogged down in tedious arithmetic. You do the skilled part of using the sextant, and the computer carries out all the celestial navigation calculations for you.


Why Astro Navigation?

Cassens-Plath Horizon Ultra SextantIn these days of GPS, you may ask yourself why would anyone still want to use a sextant. There are two reasons. First, GPS is not 100% reliable. From time to time there are system failures (normally due to a satellite failing or transmitting incorrect data), or there may be problems with your system on board - the antenna or unit could fail, or be subject to problems such as electrical interference. In these situations it is good to have a fall-back navigation system that you can use, and the benefit of a sextant is that it is totally independent of any other system.

Secondly, it is enjoyable. There is a great satisfaction to be had by using the sextant to take a signt on the sun, moon, a planet or a star, and then using this to calculate your position.

Expanding the Range

Many of you have enquired about sextants, almanacs, and other astro related products, preferring to buy from an outlet with specialist knowledge. To meet this demand, we are expanding our product range, beginning with sextants, where we will be offering models from basic sextants for learning or occasional use, up to top end, professional quality models.