Nautical words

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Assmann Psychrometer. Hygrometer with a clockwork fan that drives air at a constant rate past wet bulb. This causes exag­gerated depression of wet bulb, so giving more precise values of humidity when referred to appropriate tables.

Assured. Those who have insured, or have been insured, against loss.

'A' Stars. Spectrum classification of stars in which hydrogen lines are very evident. Their light is white, and temperature is 10,000°A. Sirius and Vega are in this class.

Astatic. Arrangement of two or more magnetic needles on a single suspension so that there is no torque when in a magnetic field.

A-stay. Said of anchor cable when its line of lead approximates a continuation of line of fore stay. Also called 'short stay'.

Astern. Outside a ship and directly abaft her.

Asteroids 24 Astronomical Twilight

Asteroids. Large number of very small planetary bodies, the mean point of whose orbits lies between Mars and Jupiter at approxi­mate distance (2-8 astronomical units) required by Bode's Law. Orbits of about 1200 have been observed; between 200 and 300 have been named; many have been observed for short periods only. Vesta is the only one discernible by the naked eye. The largest, Ceres, has a diameter of 480 miles; the majority are very much smaller.

Astigmatiser. Lens and mechanism, in a rangefinder, that causes a point of light to appear as a line of light; which can then be used to determine distance off.

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