The art of the navigator


The art of the navigator

The practise of navigation has been defined in a number of different ways, for example:

"Navigation (from the Latin navis, a ship, and agere, to direct) is the process of directing the movement of a ship or aircraft from one point to another. Both art and sience are involved in conducting a ship safely to its destination."
Dutton's Navigation and Piloting, 1969

Practical navigation (The Art of the Navigator) consists of the work necessary to solve the following problems:

  • How? Which way?(Passage Planning)
  •  Where am I? (Determination of the ships position)
  • Which direction shall I steer? (Shaping the course)
  • How do I know that things are as I believe them to be? (Situational Awareness)

Movement at sea can be described by three terms: the starting point, the direction of movement and the The act of navigating is a mixture of art and science. Navigation con­sists of finding information about the waters under consideration, planning the voyage, managing and using available navigational- instruments and ones own experi­ence in order to ensure that the plan is followed.

The art of navigation requires that the navigator is active and proac­tive, risk-conscious and capable of using the available resources of information, instruments and crew.

At the start of the voyage and in har­bour the position of the vessel is mainly determined by eye

The art of the navigatorN.V. Verlag

Back to the list