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Polar Navigation

Tue Feb 03, 2009 10:52 pm

This came up in another thread and I thought I should start a new thread to get an answer. Is there any extra navigation equipment that is necessary for an aircraft to fly a polar routing? It seems to me that something extra would be needed to fly that close to the north pole. After all, most all headings are south, but a flight needs the one that leads to London or wherever.
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RE: Polar Navigation

Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:52 pm

As I understand it, between GPS and/or inertial navigation, I think they're fine. Magnetic compasses have issues around the pole, but those are relegated to backup status nowadays.
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RE: Polar Navigation

Thu Feb 05, 2009 4:46 pm

Certain INS systems have latitude limits and are not approved for use within a few degrees of latitude from the pole.

Then there are additional confuscations regarding the navigation. Here's an article outlining the problems and suggesting the later adopted method of polar grid navigation.

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