Great circle sailing



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15  GREAT CIRCLE SAILING

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• On a Mercator chart great-circle tracks bow toward the nearest pole.


• At each meridian they have a greater latitude than the rhumb line.
• The difference in distance between a great-circle track and a rhumb line is:

Greatest at high latitudes.

Least for tracks near the equator where the meridians are nearly

parallel.

Greater for east-west courses than north-south courses.

 

• Reach a maximum latitude at the apex.


• Great circles plot as straight lines on gnomonic charts.





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