Questions tagged [navigation]

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4
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3answers
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Could 17th century astronomers in the Netherlands predict solar eclipses a few months in advance?

In the 17th century Netherlands, could the astronomers, or sailors trained in stellar navigation, predict either total or partial (at least 40% obscured) solar eclipses over the the town of Aardenburg ...
4
votes
0answers
83 views

Why couldn't Robert Peary use his theodolite at the North pole

Robert Peary writes in his book The North Pole: The instruments used in taking observations for latitude may be either a sextant and an artificial horizon, or a small theodolite. Both these ...
1
vote
1answer
105 views

When and how was it discovered that the sun was in different positions depending upon longitude?

It seems to me that the ancient Greeks knew that geographic location affected the apparent position of the sun in sky but given the lack of rapid travel or communications or reliable clocks, how was ...
6
votes
1answer
117 views

How did cartographers of past centuries determine latitude and longitude?

When were the concepts of latitude and longitude first introduced? How did cartographers determine them?
5
votes
1answer
162 views

Was Captain Cook’s voyage to observe the transit of Venus going to enable better ship navigation at the time?

On a recent visit to the Royal Observatory at Greenwich I was struck by its proximity to the Naval Academy next door. The theme of the history of clocks and development of astronomy was driven by the ...