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### Re: Constants you cannot help but remember

by davido (Archbishop)
 on Jun 08, 2004 at 15:54 UTC ( #362405=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Constants you cannot help but remember

If you have a little explorer/navigator in your blood:

One minute of latitudinal arc = one nautical mile. 1 degree = 60 minutes. 360 degrees * 60 minutes = 21600nm; the approximate circumference of the Earth, in nautical miles. Since there are 6076 feet in a nautical mile, and 60 seconds in a minute, there are approximately 100 feet (101.26 to be exact) per second of arc.

What doesn't make a lot of sense is why folks decided to use a different statute mile. ;) The nautical mile is so convenient.

Dave

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Re^2: Constants you cannot help but remember
by hawtin (Prior) on Jun 09, 2004 at 08:41 UTC

In metric the size of the earth is easier since the French originally defined the metre to be 1/10000000th of the distance from the North Pole to the Equator through Paris. (the definition has changed but the value is still close enough)

That's a really easy constant to remember. I have needed it often even if those living in the US would rather use feet (or Survey Feet, or Clarke's feet, or whatever) (for which I can always remember the conversion factor 0.3048 by the way)

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