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Old 09-12-2014, 19:17   #1
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Best Celestial Navigation App

Purely for pleasure while sailing I am looking for a celestial navigation app for my IPad. Don't want to carry almanac and reduction tables. Star pilot seems ok from a distance. Any experience or comments on available programs?
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Old 23-12-2014, 16:59   #2
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Regrettably many replies in these matters begin this way, "I don't have an iPad BUT...."

...StarPilot will probably be the best choice and will make CelNav a lot easier if you're not inclined to use paper and pencil.

If your machine can run xls spreadsheets Peter Hakel has made many spreadsheets for Celnav, et al.

Interactive Spreadsheets for Celestial Navigation

They're free but take some "getting used to" in terms of entering coordinates. But, they're great programs.

Also, a perfect Sun sight reduction spreadsheet can be obtained here;

Excel Sight Reduction Spreadsheet for Astro Navigation.

Erik Deman has all of the Nautical Almanac information on his site.

Celestial Navigation: Contents

You can get HO 249 Volumes 1, 2 and 3 here;

https://www.celestaire.com/pubs/category/3-pub-249.html

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Old 24-04-2015, 06:39   #3
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

On my iphone I use an app simply called "Celestial." My app has a blue background with a graphic of a marine sextant in white. It has the ability to reduce sights for all 57 navigational stars, sun, moon, and planets. It is fairly simple to use and generally agrees with the calculator method of sight reduction which is the most accurate method.
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Old 24-04-2015, 09:45   #4
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Quote:
Originally Posted by cygnussailor View Post
On my iphone I use an app simply called "Celestial." My app has a blue background with a graphic of a marine sextant in white. It has the ability to reduce sights for all 57 navigational stars, sun, moon, and planets. It is fairly simple to use and generally agrees with the calculator method of sight reduction which is the most accurate method.

Thanks for that advice. Just downloaded - looks useful.


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Old 24-04-2015, 16:36   #5
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Just for backup purposes you can get The Nautical Almanac for any year up to 2020 at

The Nautical Almanac

Everything you need to do a sight reduction is available at that site.
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Old 29-09-2020, 11:34   #6
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Resurrecting this very old thread. What changed since then? Any new recommendation?

One feature I would like to find is a way to record the time of the sextant reading. Recent features in iOS that could be useful for that include voice-activated action, and taping on the back of the phone (better than shake).
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Old 29-09-2020, 21:10   #7
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Quote:
Originally Posted by jdmuys View Post
One feature I would like to find is a way to record the time of the sextant reading..

You may like Frank Reed's GPS Anti-Spoof app.


Google Play


iOS App Store


Celestial (mentioned [much] earlier in this thread) is still my favorite ... but unfortunately it seems to have disappeared from Google Play. Another great set of apps is Andres Ruiz Gonzáles' Navigational Algorithms.



I am getting close to finishing an excel spreadsheet that does all the dirty work. I'll post a link here when it's ready.
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Old 30-09-2020, 14:26   #8
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

Celestial on the iPad is $31 AUD!
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Old 01-10-2020, 00:27   #9
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Re: Best Celestial Navigation App

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Celestial on the iPad is $31 AUD!

It's pretty expensive as apps go, yes. But it does what it's intended to do very well. It is one of the only apps I have seen which allows the user to input custom values of Delta-T (the difference between "terrestrial time" [which the app uses] and UT). This shows that the developer has thought about "future-proofing" his app. Even without updates from the developer, the app can give you accurate celestial data far into the future.


(Which is good for me, since I have an Android phone and - as I mentioned earlier - the app seems to no longer be supported for Android.)
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