Loren E. DeGroot and John Larsen

Peer Reviewed

Abstract: TO RETURN A MANNED SPACECRAFT to an area of safe recovery, a self-contained navigational capability is becoming increasingly important. And, in view of the limited reliability of present and projected electronic equipment, the utilization of a human navigator is essential. During the transition from sailing vessels to low-altitude aircraft and on to modern high-altitude jet aircraft, the navigator has successfully solved his two-dimensional navigation problem by utilizing celestial observations. Now a technique is needed that provides for near planet orbital navigation in three dimensions when the only observational instruments are a sextant and a watch. Such a technique is described in this paper; its feasibility has been demonstrated during the high-altitude phase of the recent Rockwell Polar Flight.
Published in: NAVIGATION: Journal of the Institute of Navigation, Volume 13, Number 4
Pages: 320 - 326
Cite this article: DeGroot, Loren E., Larsen, John, "THREE DIMENSION CELESTIAL NAVIGATION", NAVIGATION: Journal of The Institute of Navigation, Vol. 13, No. 4, Winter 1966-1967, pp. 320-326.
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