UNITED STATES COAST GUARD AUXILIARY
OPERATION BOAT SMART
BOAT SMART FROM THE START
ADVANCED COASTAL NAVIGATION
The U. S. Coast Guard Auxiliary's
Advanced Coastal Navigation (ACN) course is a comprehensive course to prepare the advanced boater with the knowledge needed to safely pilot a boat.
- INTRODUCTION TO COASTAL NAVIGATION -- course overview; names and definitions of various types of navigation; steps of voyage planning and underway navigation; earth's coordinate system and its use to specify location; how direction can be measured on the surface; conversion of direction (true, magnetic, compass and relative) to another.
- THE MARINE MAGNETIC COMPASS -- parts and principle of operation of the marine magnetic compass; concept of deviation and distinctions between compass north, magnetic north, and true north; "swinging ship" and deviation table preparation; rapidly and reliably solving TVMDC and/or CDMVT computations.
- THE NAUTICAL CHART -- characteristics of nautical charts, particularly Mercator and polyconic projections; plotting positions in terms of latitude and longitude; various chart types/scales and their appropriate uses; basic knowledge of chart symbols; rapid and reliable measurement of direction, distance, and location on Mercator and polyconic nautical charts.
- THE NAVIGATOR'S TOOLS AND INSTRUMENTS -- navigator tools used in everyday practice; basic skills and familiarity with the use of plotting instruments; use of other instruments and equipment used in the practice of navigation.
- DEAD RECKONING -- working knowledge of dead reckoning methods including plotting, labeling, measuring, and determining DR positions; speed, time, distance formulas and problem solving; speed estimation, tachometers and speed curves.
- PILOTING -- Line of Position (LOP) concepts; bearing use in LOPs; running fix by advancing or retiring an LOP; danger bearings; estimated positions when the data are lacking for a FIX.
- CURRENT SAILING -- understanding current and the motion of the vessel; current problems on both the nautical chart and maneuvering board including determination of EP given set and drift, course steered, and speed maintained; determination of actual set and drift given course steered, speed maintained, and a FIX; determination of course to steer and resultant SOA given set and drift and intended track; determination of course to steer and speed to maintain given specified track and speed of advance and current set and drift.
- TIDES AND TIDAL CURRENTS -- understanding tidal phenomena, causes, and typical variations; appreciate the practical reasons why tides are important to the mariner; know how to use the Tide Tables to estimate the height of the tide at any time; know how to use the Tidal Current Tables to estimate the strength and direction of the current at any time.
- RADIO NAVIGATION -- understanding the basics of RDF, Loran-C, Radar, and GPS, their respective advantages, disadvantages, limitations and how they can be used to fix position; radar use for collision- avoidance CPA and target course and speed.
- NAVIGATION REFERENCE PUBLICATIONS -- Acquaintance with the U.S. Coast Pilot, the Light List, and the Notices to Mariners; computation of visibility of lights given height of light, observer, prevailing visibility and nominal ranges; importance of up-to-date charts and other publications.
- FUEL AND VOYAGE PLANNING -- Understand the basics of fuel planning, including the definitions of fuel efficiency, fuel reserves, endurance, and range; fuel consumption affects of such factors as hull design, engine horsepower, throttle settings, condition of bottom etc.; developing a fuel consumption curve; effects of current in fuel planning; preparing and using a "Howgozit" chart for a voyage.
- REFLECTIONS -- Examples of 10 principles of navigation learned the hard way.
Click on the link below to find the next available Advanced Coastal Navigation Course near you.
ALL DISTRICT 1SR PUBLIC EDUCATION COURSES
For more information about the above or any other Operation Boat Smart activity, please contact Bob Daraio at firstname.lastname@example.org
Don't forget to check out BOAT SMART KIDS and
Smart Start For Paddlers
We Need You -- The Coast Guard Auxiliary is called upon to provide essential services to the Coast Guard as they focus more heavily on their military missions. We need all the help we can get. You needn't own a boat or be an experienced boater, since our missions are wide-ranging. For information about Auxiliary missions and the Auxiliary in general, go to our Join the Auxiliary web page. You will find there a form through which you can ask that a local Auxiliarist make contact with you to explore the ways in which you can assist Team Coast Guard. To learn more go to Charting Your Course in the USCG Auxiliary.
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