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A comparison of the methods used in determining azimuth by

solar observations

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Authors Murphy, Gerald Edward, 1931-

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A COMPARISON OF THE METHODS USED IN DETERMINING

AZIMUTH BY SOLAR OBSERVATIONS

by

. Gerald E. Murphy

A Thesis Submitted to the Faculty of the

DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL ENGINEERING

In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements


For the Degree of

MASTER OF SCIENCE

In the Graduate College

THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA

1964
STATEMENT BY AUTHOR

This thesis has been submitted in partial fulfillment of re­


quirements for an advanced degree at The University of Arizona and
is deposited in The University Library to be made available to bor­
rowers under rules of the Library.

Brief quotations from this thesis are allowable without special


pe r mission, provided that accurate acknowledgment of source is m a d e .
Requests for permission for extended quotation from or reproduction
of this manuscript in whole or in part may be granted by the head of
the major department or the Dean of the Graduate College when in
their judgment the proposed use of the material is in the interests
of scholarship. In all other instances, h o w e v e r , permission must
be obtained from the author.

SIGNED: ^

APPROVAL BY THESIS DIRECTOR

This thesis has been approved on the date shown below:

^ P H l I l P B. NEWlAN Date
Associate Professor of Civil Engineering
TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page

LIST OF PLATES o e o e o o e e e e o o o e e a o o o e Q o o o o e e e o o o o e o e e e e t o o o o e e o e o e G I V

LIST OF I LLUSTRATI ONS ©eoooooefroeeGeeooeoooeoeeGeoseooooec-oocooe V

INTRODUCTION o©ee©e«e»»t»©©oo©e®<a©»eeoo©eeoo©eieo©ovo©<aoGUG©c<5o»<i» X

CHAPTER I

THE HISTORY, ADVANTAGES, AND


DISADVANTAGES OF SOLAR OBSERVATIONS

The History of Solar Observations »e»,,,*co 3


Advantages 00G0etieeo0ee®©6000e9000tf0»000»e000eGe000@e»oe0e-g©cc»0 V
Disadvantages e©o®epeoe6oc<8©e6ooeoso6oo6©9oee®e©eo©©»©<eo#ee©oet30 9

CHAPTER II

DETERMINATION OF AZIMUTH BY
SOLAR OBSERVATION

D e f i m t l O n S and Notations o o c e e © o » e b e o © » e e o » © © © e © e © o © e e o o « > y e © © e e XX


The AStrOnOIDlCal Triangle o 6 0 ©©oo©eGOOoeoooeaooo©o©eeeo«ee©oo©e© X^
B aS 1 0 Equati ons » e © e » e t » e e o t i o o e o o o c i o o e o o e e e © e » o e o o o o o o © » o © © » < i Q c o 13

CHAPTER III

METHODS OF OBSERVING THE SUN

Solar Screen o o c o © © e o c e D » o » © o o e o © o e © © 6 e s o o e o o © © e © o e o e e a e o o G o 6 o e e 17
Solar Filter e o e e e o © o o 6 o © © ® e e » o 6 o o e © o ® © o © © o © o o © & o o e © o © o o o © o © o e c e 24
S O la r Re tic le G ® © o © » e o o e o t > o © » o c o » © © e ® o » o o e o o o s © © © o © e e e o e o < » o o a o ® e 20
Simplex S d a r Shield © o © o e o e » e o o o o e © o o o e » © » e e e © e o o e e e © « c o 0 © c 6 o © o 27
RO0 IpfS S d a r Prism eeoeeooo©e©ee»oo6<>©©®oooeeeoocQ"eo»c©©©ci<?»D» 28

111
iv
CHAPTER IV

CORRECTIONS FOR THE S U N ’S


CURVATURE AND SEMIDIAMETER
■ Page
S e ITilc3.1ame *telP oeeeoQeooeoeeoeooeoesoooe. ee^tieoeoeoeoooeoeeeecoeeeo-- 31
Curvature Correction ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©oo©©©©©©©©©©© 34
Semidiameter Correction ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©o©©©©©©©*©©©©©©©©©©©©©©© 36

CHAPTER V

DETERMINING DECLINATION, LATITUDE,


AND LONGITUDE

Declination ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©o©©©©©*©©©©©©© 42
Latitude ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©o©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©© 45
Longitude ©©o©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©© 46

CHAPTER VI

AZIMUTH BY THE ALTITUDE OF THE SUN

Introduction ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©o©©©©©©©©©©©©©#©©©©©© 51
Trigonometric Formulas ©©«©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©© 51
Factors Affecting the Measuring of Altitude ©l o o t i o o e e e e e c e e o o o 54
Effect of Errors in Altitude on the Computed Azimuth © © 65
Effect of Errors in Declination on the Computed Azimuth 67
Effect of Errors in Latitude on the Computed Azimuth ©©©©.©©©© 71
Field Procedure for Observations 73

CHAPTER VII

AZIMUTH BY THE HOUR ANGLE


OF THE SUN

Introduction ©©@©©©©©©©©©©©©*©©©©©©©©©©©**©©©©*©©©©©©©@©©©©@© 0 ©© 76
Determining the Hour Angle of the Sun .©...©.©©..«..© .©©»»©©.©. © 78
Factors Affecting the Measurement of the Sun's Hour Angle 81
Field Procedure for Observations 85
CHAPTER VIII

OTHER METHODS OF DETERMINING


AZIMUTH BY THE SUN

Azimuth by the Altitude and Hour Angle of the Sun


Ec^ual Altitude Method e>©o©®®G©oooo©®9 oo©ooooo©ocfc

CHAPTER IX

COMPUTATIONS

Introduction o©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©®©©©©©©©©©©©
Slide Rule o©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©
Logarithms ©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©o©©©©©©©
Natural Functions ooeooo©©©©©©©®©©©©©©®©©©©©©©©©©
Electronic Digital Computer 0 0 6 6 0 6 0 0 6 6 9 0

Hour Angle Program 6 0 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 6 6 0 0 0 0 6 0 6 6 0 0 0 6 0 6 0

CHAPTER X

CONCLUSION

C O n d U S l O n o o o o o o o o e e o e o e o o o o o o e o e e o o e o o e o e o o e o o

BIBLIOGRAPHY o e o O o o c e o o o o o o o o o o e o o o s a d o a o o o o e e o o o
LIST OF PLATES

Plate Page

1 Computation of S u n 9s Declination 44

2 Telescopic Solar Declination Setting e * , * , * . * . , . . 46

3 Determination of Azimuth by Log Secants „»* * *„*»,»*,* * * a 55

4 Alt ltude« Azimuth Curves »ec>»©ooo6 eot>oooo6 oeoeeoeoeoooo 6 » 68

5 Effect of An Error In Declination on The S u n 9s


Hearing efeoooo&oooooefcQCtoO’eefreoooooeoeeeeoooeoooooo 70

6 Effect of Latitude and Hour Angle on dB/dPhi © „o * . 72

7 Altitude«-Azimuth Curves With dB/dPhi© Curves


Superimposed ©©©eo©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©©© 74

8 Error In Azimuth For One Second Error In Time ©»© © © © © © © © 86

vi
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

Figure Page

1 Groma ......... r o o o e e o o o o e e o o o o o o o e o t i o t i e o o o e t e o o o o e o o o o e o o 4

2 Indian Circle , o f r o e e e o o o e o e t o o o o e q & o e e o o o e e o o o G Q Q O o o o o o o 5

3 Celestial Triangle .......... e e e o e o e e e e o o o o o o y o o e o e f r o o o o o „ 12

4 Spherical Triangle ' O o o o o e e e o o o o o 6 e > e e p o e o © 6 e © , o o o e d o o e o ' . 14

5 Quadrant-Tangent Method e e e e e o o o o o o e o o o o o e o i y o o o o o e e 19

6 Center-Tangent Method e e e o o o e e o o o o o o O e e o e o o e o e o & e c e o o o e o o 21

7 Bisect! On e e o o e e e e e o o e e o o e e e c o . e o o o o o c e e e o e e o e e o e e o e e c e e o e o 23

8 Solar Filters Quadrant-Tangent Method e o e o e e e e o o d e o f l o o o e o 25

9 Solar Filters Center-Tangent Method , o 0 © o o o 25

10 Solar Reticle o d e e e e e e o e e o e o e e ' e a © e e o e o o o o o o o o e o e o e o e e e . t i i 26

11 Roelofs 9 Solar Prism i e © e e © o e 1 © © o o B o o a o o o o o e o o o o o o o o 29

12 Semidiameter Correction A o o e o o o e e e o o e o B o e o o o o o i 31

13 Horizontal Angle Correction for Sun 9s


Angular Semidiameter „*,* * *,„ o o o o o e o o o o a o 33

14 Effect of Curvature •• o e e e o o e o o o 35

15 Effect of Semidiameter e o c c o o o c ^ o o o o o o o o q o o o e >© o o o 37

16 Quadrant-Tangent © o e e e e o o e o e e f e a e c e o e e e o o e o o e o o o o o e o o e o o o o 39

17 Accuracy of Measuring Latitude « 47

18 Accuracy of Measuring Longitude o o o o e o o e 49

19 XnStrUmeTit Error eeooooooooooo&doeooooosooeeeooooooooooool 57

20 Refraction Q © © © s © © o ©«© © © © o © o o o o o c o e e o o o e o o o e o o o o o o o o e 60

vii
viii

Figure ' Page

2 3L P erS i 3-SX. o * e e o o d e » o o e o e e o e o o e o o » Q o o » e o e i ? o e e o o t i o o < ) o e o @ o # e e o 03

22 Relationship Between the Greenwich Hour Angle


an (1 Local Hour Angle o c e o e e e e o o e o o o e e o e o t i e e o o e o e o o o o e 61
A COMPARISON OF THE METHODS USED IN DETERMINING

AZIMUTH BY SOLAR OBSERVATIONS

By

Gerald E. Murphy

Abstract

A number of methods are available to determine azimuth

by the sun. The basic equations are derived and each method

examined. Devices for pointing on the sun are discussed in

detail. All factors that are related to the computed azimuth

such as declination, latitude, and longitude are considered along

with the measurement of each. The altitude and hour angle methods

are compared and the factors affecting the accuracy of each

method discussed. The solar equations can be solved in a number

of ways. The standard methods of performing the computations are

reviewed and a digital computer program to solve the hour angle

.equation is presented.

ix
INTRODUCTION

The science of surveying had its birth at the time man first

recognized the right of private ownership of land* This recognition

was impossible without b o u n d a r ies 9 no matter how crude* to delineate

one m a n ffs holdings from his neighbors* As populations increased and

land became more valuable the status of the land surveyor grew* In

540 A *D * Cassiodorus wrote the following concerning the place of the

land surveyor in Roman life*

The professors of this science [of land surveying] are


honored with a most earnest attention than falls to the
lot of any other philosophers* Arithmetic 9 theoretical
g eometry 9 a s t ronomy 9 and music are discoursed upon to
listless a udiences 9 sometimes empty benc h e s 6 But the land
surveyor is like a judges the deserted fields become his
f o r u m 9 crowded with eager spectators* You would fancy
him a madman when you see him walking along the most
devious paths* But in truth he is seeking for the traces
of lost facts in rough woods and thickets* He walks not
as other men walk* His path is the book from which he
reads % he shows what he is saying; he proves what he hath
learned; by his steps he divides the rights of hostile
claimants; and like a mighty river he takes away the fields
of one side to deposit them on the other,^

The measurement of distance and the determination of direc­

tion were an essential part of these early surveys* It seems highly

possible that the lofty position held by the land surveyor in early

^-Edmond R* Kiely* Surveying Instruments: Their History and


Classroom U s e g Bureau of Publications* Teachers College* Columbia
University$ New Y o r k , 1947, page 43*

1
Roman times was partly due to the skill he had developed in determin­

ing direction. The use of the sun and stars to establish the meridian

surely impressed the landowners of Rome,

The present day land surveyor is still called upon to determine

the true bearing of boundary lines. Most of our state and county

b o u n d a r i e s 9 and all surveys of the public lands of the United States

since 1 8 5 5 9 are defined in terms of astronomic or true n o r t h $ Celes­

tial observations are the only means of establishing a true meridian.

The following chapters compare the methods used in determining this

meridian by observations on the sun.


CHAPTER I

THE H I S T O R Y „ ADVANTAGES„ AND

DISADVANTAGES OF SOLAR OBSERVATIONS

The History of Solar Observations

The practice of determining azimuth by the sun can be traced

to the earliest Etruscan h i s t o r y c In the sixth century B.C, these

people established the meridian by the rising and setting of the srnn

The method consisted of staking the east-west line e the decimanus, by

observing the sun at its first appearance in the morning and again as

it set in the afternoon. The north-south line, the cardo, was

established by means of the groma» A sketch of the groma is shown in

Fig, 1,

The groma was used to construct a perpendicular to the decim­

anus, The Etruscans were aware of the fact that this method gave the

true meridian only at the time of the equinoxes, In their writings

they recommend that the decimanus be established only from the shadow

of the sixth hour.^

Another early method of establishing the meridian was known

as the Indian Circle Method. The. oldest Indian description of this

method is to be found in the Surya Siddhanta., an astronomical work

j-Ibid., page 32 ■

3
4

dating from about 400 B.C.^

Fig. 1.— Groma

The method was as follows: A circle was drawn on a carefully

leveled section of ground, A vertical rod was placed at the exact

^ I bid., page 61
center. When the extremity of the stick's shadow touched the circle both

in the morning and afternoon a point was marked. Fig. 2 shows the

Indian Circle with straight lines connecting the two points and the

center of the circle.

Fig. 2.— Indian Circle

The bisection of the lines formed was the true meridian.

Bisection was accomplished solely by means of measured distances in

much the same manner as described in present day surveying textbooks.

The Romans adopted the Indian Circle method and it was used

extensively for the establishment of street lines and the determination

of boundaries.

The Moslems introduced various refinements to the Indian

Circle method. One important contribution was the use of a number of

concentric circles instead of one. This made it possible to mark a

number of points on different circles in both the morning and after­


noon. Better accuracy was obtained and the meridian could still be

determined even if clouds obscured the sun for a portion of the day.

The determination of azimuth was important to the Moslems both in

their astronomical work and in determining the direction of Mecca for

some of their religious rituals.

The accuracy of the Indian Circle method can be more appreciated

when compared with the magnetic compass. The earliest records of

scientific observations on the variation of magnetic declination were

made by Felipe Guillen in 1525,*^ JBy means of the Indian Circle

method he determined the meridian and then found the angle between the

compass needle and the meridian.

The first tables of the sun*s declination were published in

Hebrew in 1473 by Abraham Zacuto, They were later translated into

Latin by Jose Vizinto, These tables and other useful information to

mariners were printed in manuals or regimentos. They were used to

calculate latitude by meridian altitude observations of the sun.

The early property surveys in the New Wprld were made with

instruments and methods little better than those used in ancient times.

Direction was usually determined by magnetic compass. The variation

in magnetic declination was checked by observations of Polaris at

elongation,

LI b i d e * page 214,
The rectangular surveying system used in the United States

is dependent on the establishing of cardinal courses for controlling

lines„ The early surveys of the public land were dependent on the

needle compass for direction* The compass was first referenced to

magnetic north and the magnetic declination was then turned off* As

the surveys progressed into the upper regions of the Great Lakes the

magnetic compass proved so erratic that its use had to be discontinued*

The Burt solar compass was introduced in Northern Michigan

about 1836o*^ The solar unit, was later mounted on the telescope of a

transit* The use of solar observations proved both reasonably

accurate and relatively inexpensive in the survey of the public domain*

The development of optical transits and the improvement of

methods of pointing on the sun have made solar observations an im­

portant part of modern surveys*

Advantages

The surveyor who rises at some d a r k s frigid hour to observe

Polaris at elongation can readily understand one advantage of deter­

mining azimuth by solar observation* Solar shots are taken only in

the daytime and usually during regular working hours* Avoiding a

special trip to the field for the sole purpose of taking a star shot

^The Gurley Telescopic Solar Transit: Its Use and Adjustments 9


Bulletin No. 112-T* W. 6 L* E. Gurley, Troy* New York* page 15*
could mean a substantial savings in the cost of a surveye

Working in daylight hours offers several advantages» In

remote areas and in rugged te r rain 9 it is much easier to find the

instrument s t a t i o n 9 and there is no need to occupy the target station

for the purpose of illuminating the target* Instrument setups are

faster % and there is less danger of accidently disturbing the transit

by bumping a tripod l e g e Mistakes in reading and recording both angles

and time are fewer than when working in semi~or total darkness*

Solar observations can be successfully made when observing

conditions are relatively poor. Partly cloudy and hazy conditions

that would prevent a Polaris shot seldom interfere with a solar

observation.

In northern latitudes 9 observations of Polaris, require rel­

atively large vertical angles in comparison with solar shots* This

will result in proportionally large errors in vertical and horizontal

angles if an instrument is in poor adjustment. The error in the

horizontal angle for a one minute inclination of the vertical axis is

four times as great for a vertical angle of forty-five degrees as

compared with a vertical angle of fifteen degrees

^Raymond E. Davis and Francis S e Foo t e 9 Surveying: Theory


and P r a c t i c e * McGraw-Hill Book C ompany 9 I n c , s New Y o r k , fourth
e d i t i o n s 1 9 5 3 9 page 305.
Disadvantages

The size and brightness of the sun are probably the major

drawbacks in solar observations* Its large size makes it difficult

to point at its exact center* Several methods of pointing and

numerous devices have been u s e d 9 but none so simple or accurate as

pointing on a star* The extreme brightness of the sun requires the

use of a darkener or solar screen to prevent serious damage to the

observer8s eye*

The computations required to determine azimuth by the sun are

longer and more complicated than those used in reducing a Polaris

observation* An error in computing the bearing of Polaris will

result in an azimuth that at most is wrong by two or three d egrees,

whereas an error in computing the bearing of the sun may give an

absurd answer*

Parallax is an added correction that must be considered on

solar shots that can be ignored on other stellar observations*

Several other factors that affect any survey work performed

in direct sunlight should be mentioned* "Surface wind speed is

usually at a minimum about sunrise and increases to a maximum in

early afternoon * Atmospheric conditions are much more variable

and result'in unequal atmospheric refraction* The s u n 8s rays often

strike one side of the instrument while the other side remains

*^Ray K* Linsley% Max A* K o h l e r 9 and Joseph L* H* Pa u l h u s 9


Hydrology For E n g i n e e r s , McGraw-Hill Book Company* Inc,, New Y o r k ,
1958, page 2 1 /
10

shaded* This results in a temperature difference and unequal expansion

of parts of the telescope*

Conditions most favorable for the precise measurement of angles

are in direct conflict with the requirements for solar observations*

The use of umbrellas* overcast skies* or nighttime observations are

impossible when determining azimuth by the sun*


CHAPTER II

DETERMINATION OF AZIMUTH BY

SOLAR OBSERVATIONS

Definitions and Notations

The determination of azimuth by solar observation requires

that a system of coordinates be used that will enable the surveyor

to compute the bearing of the sun* A number of astronomical systems

of coordinates are in common use at the present t i m e » Only two of

theses the horizon system and the equator s y s t e m 9 are needed in

determining azimuth by solar observation 0 Fig. 3 shows the celestial

t r i a n g l e 5 both in the horizon and equator system. To understand the

celestial triangle, a number of terms must be defined in each system

and their notation given.

The Horizon System

Celestial Spheres An imaginary sphere of infinite radius

with its center at the center of the earth.

Sun (S): The star nearest the earth about which the earth

r evolves«,

Zenith (Z): A point directly overhead. This would be the

point at which a plumb line projected upward would pierce the

celestial sphere.

Nadir: The point directly opposite the zenith on the

celestial sphere.

11
12

o"

Fig. 3.— Celestial Triangle

Horizon: A great circle defining the intersection of the

celestial sphere and a plane perpendicular to the line joining the

zenith and nadir and halfway between these points.

Vertical Circles: Great circles passing through the zenith

and nadir.

M eridian: The vertical circle which passes through the

celestial p o l e s .

Azimuth ( B ) : The azimuth of the sun is the angle at the

zenith measured eastward or westward from the meridian to the verti­

cal circle through the s u n .


Altitude (h): The s u n es angular distance above the h orizon,

It is measured upward on the vertical circle through the sun from the

horizon to the sun®

Zenith Distance (z )i 90°«h

The Equator System

Celestial Equator: The intersection of the plane of the

e a r t h 9s equator with the celestial sphere«>

Celestial Poles (P): The two points where the axis of ro­

tation of the earth extended pierces the celestial sphere®

Hour Circle: Great circles perpendicular to the equator and

passing through the celestial poles.

Merid i a n : The hour circle through the zenith of an observer.

Hour Angle (t): The angle at the pole from the meridian

westward to the hour circle through the sun.

Declination (Dec.): The angular distance measured on the

hour circle through the sun from the equator to the sun. It is

positive when measured northward from the equator and negative when

measured southward.

Polar Dis t a n c e : 90o-Dec»

Latitude (Phi*): The angular distance of the observer north

or south of the equator measured along a meridian of longitude 0

Longitude: Angular distance of a meridian east or west of a

starting meridian through Greenwich^ E n g l a n d & measured along the

equator*
14

The Astronomical Triangle

The astronomical triangle, like any spherical triangle, has

certain relationships between its sides and its angles. These laws

are derived in any text on spherical trigonometry and the derivation

will not be repeated. Referring to Fig. 4.(a) the three most important

formulas in the solution of any spherical triangle a r e :

( a) (b)

Fig. 4.— Spherical Triangle

The law of sines.

sin A _ sin B _ sin C (


sin a sin b sin c

The law of cosines.

cos b = cos a x cos c + sin a x sin c x cos B ........ (2)

Relationship between two angles and three sides.

sin a cos B = sin c x cos b - cos c x sin b x cos A (3)


15

The application of these three laws to the astronomical

triangle results in the basic equations for determining azimuth.

Basic Equations

The astronomical triangle is shown in Fig. 4.(b) and equations

(1), (2), and (3) applied.

The law of sines.

sin B _ sin t
sin (90°-Dec.!) sin (90o-h)

or

Sln B = cos Dec. x sin t /ltX


( 1,)

The law of cosines solving for B.

cos (90°-Dec.) = cos (9 0 °-h) x cos (90°-Phi.)

+ sin (9 0 °-h) x sin (90°-Phi.) x cos B

After reduction this equation becomes

sin Dec. = sin h x sin Phi. + cos h x cos Phi. x cos B

or

D _ sin Dec. - sin h x sin Phi. ,c\


COS B - ■ ..... .. . Ko)
cos h x cos Phi.

The law of cosines solving for t .

cos (9 0 ° - h ) = cos (90°-Phi.) x cos (90°-Dec.)

+ sin (90°-Phi,) x sin (90°-Dec.) x cos t

After reduction this becomes


16

sin h = sin Phi. x sin Dec. + cos Phi. x cos Dec. x cos t

or

COS
+L. _
w
sin h - sin Phi.
■ — 1*1 I w
x sin
n > T ■! n I I ■ 1 m
Dec.-
cos Phi. x cos Dec,

Relationship between two angles and three sides.

sin (90°-h) x cos B = sin (90°-Phi.) x cos (90°-Dec.)

- cos (90°-Phi.) x sin (90°-Dec.) x cos t

After reduction this becomes

cos h x cos B = cos Phi. x sin Dec.

- sin Phi. x cos Dec. x cos t .......... . (7)

Another useful equation can be developed by dividing E q . (7) by Ec . (4).

cos h x cos B _
cos h x sin B

cos Phi, x sin Dec. - sin Phi, x cos Dec. x cos t


cos Dec. x sin t

or

cos P h i . x tan Dec. - sin Phi. x cos t


cot B --------------------JJ— -------------------
CHAPTER III

METHODS OF OBSERVING THE SUN

Solar Screen >r

Viewing the sun directly through a telescope may result in

serious injury to the observer's eye. There are several safe ways

of pointing a telescope at the sun. The solar screen is probably

the most commonly used method of viewing the sun. The observation

can be made with any transit that contains a vertical limb. The

screen may consist of a special attachment supplied by the instrument

m anufacturer 9 but more often it is simply a white card held by hand

a few inches back of the eyepiece® The advantage of the attach­

ment is that the screen remains perpendicular to the axis of the

telescope and at a fixed distance from the eyepiece. In either case

the screen is used to reflect the sun*s image.

The sun is sighted by pointing the telescope in the direction

of the sun and observing the shadows cast by the telescope vial

posts* When the shadows appear to coincide the azimuth motion is

locked. The telescope is then rotated about its horizontal axis

until the image of the sun flashes across the screen® The vertical

motion is then locked. By carefully focusing both the objective lens

and the eyepiece* the shadows of the cross wires are visible against

a sharp image of the sun,

i.
18

When using a solar screen there is still the problem of

pointing at the center of the sun* The pointing can be accomplished

by any of the following methods«

Quadrant-Tangent Method

The s u n 9s image is brought into view on the solar screen in

such a position that it is tangential to both the horizontal and

vertical cross wires* At the moment of tangency the t i m e 9 vertical

a n g l e f and horizontal angle are read and recorded* Knowing the semi­

diameter of the sun the correct vertical and horizontal angle to the

s u n 9s center can be computed*

An easier method of obtaining the correct vertical and hori­

zontal angle to the sun*s center requires taking observations in

pairs* The second pointing places the s u n 9s image in a diagonally

opposed quadrant from the first* Assuming the path of the sun is a

straightline between poin t i n g s 9 the mean of the-vertical and hori­

zontal angles requires no correction.

Since the sun is moving rapidly in both altitude and azimuth 9

it is difficult to follow it by manipulating both motions of a

transit* Sighting can be simplified by selecting a quadrant in which

the s u n 9s image is moving toward one cross hair and away from the

other. One wire is set to cut a segment of the sun*s image that is

moving away from the cross hair® This wire is then kept stationary

while the sun is tracked with the other wire* The instant the edge

of the sun becomes tangent to the stationary wire, all motion is

stopped* By this method a simultaneous tangency can be obtained*


19

The correct quadrant to place the image of the sun is

dependent on when the observation is made and the type of telescope.

Fig. 5 shows the image of the sun as it appears on a solar screen with

an erecting telescope.

A.M. P.M
P.

Hor. Wire Vert. Wire Hor. Wire Vert, Wire


Stationary Stationary Stationary Stationary

Fig. 5.— Quadrant-Tangent Method

When an inverting telescope is used Fig. 5. should be turned

upside down.

A number of different procedures are used when taking a series

of observations by the quadrant-tangent method. The K 6 E Solar

Ephemeris recommends taking at least three successive readings with

the sun's image in the same quadrant before the telescope is reversed.

An equal number of pointings are then made in the diagonally opposed

quadrant. The averages of the times, vertical angles, and horizontal

angles are used to compute the bearing. This method is subject to

rather large curvature errors since a time lapse of ten to fifteen


20

minutes may occur between the initial and final sighting*

A more refined method of observing is used by the Bureau of

Land Management* They treat each pair of observations as a series and

from the average readings compute an azimuth* A total of three sets

are taken and the average value of the three computed azimuths used as

the true bearing*

The Geological Survey recommends a total of ten observations*

Five sightings are taken with the sun in the same quadrant* Upon

completion of the fifth pointing the initial station is sighted* The

telescope is then reversed and five pointings taken in the diagonally

opposed quadrante The mean values of the ten pointings are used in

computing azimuth. The Geological Surveyb method of reading horizon­

tal angles differs from most procedures. The A vernier is read for

all pointings with telescope direct and the B vernier for all

pointings with the telescope reversede This method enables the

observer to read the angles faster, and there is less danger of

accidently bumping a tripod leg* A time limitation of ten minutes is

used between the first and last pointing.

When using the average values of several pointings taken over

a period of time, some error is introduced* The effect of assuming

the stings path is a straightline is discussed in Chapter IV*

Center-Tangent Method

The quadrant-tangent method involves watching two points of

tangency at the same time* Since the points are approximately

sixteen minutes apart it is impossible to observe them simultaneouslye


21

The best an observer can do is to view them alternately as rapidly as

possible. The center-tangent method overcomes this difficulty by

requiring only one point of tangency to be observed.

The image of the sun is brought into view on the screen in

the same manner as in the quadrant-tangent method. One wire is kept

centered on the sun while the other wire remains stationary and allows

the sun's image to make its own point of tangency. The moving wire

is kept centered on the sun by bisecting the small and diminishing

se g m e n t . The sun's i m a g e , as it appears on a solar screen with an

erecting t e l e s c o p e , is shown in Fig. 6.

A.M. P.M.

©® ©Bor, Wire
Stationary
Vert. Wire
Stationary
Hor. Wire
Stationary
Vert. Wire
Stationary

Fig. 6.— Center-Tangent Method

When an inverted telescope is used Fig. 6. should be turned

upside down.
Use of the center-tangent method requires that each obser­

vation be corrected for semidiameter» The s u n *3 semidiameter is

always added to the vertical angle for observations taken in the A.M.

and subtracted from observations taken in the P » M C The semidiameter

correction to horizontal angles is.equal to the sun*s semidiameter 9

as given in the eph e m e r i s 9 multiplied by the secant of the s u n 5s

altitude* Confusion as to when the correction should be added and

when it should be subtracted from the observed horizontal angles can

be avoided by use of the following rule*

No matter in what manner the observation is m a d e 9 with


inverted telescope 9 prismatic e y epiece 9 or image projected
on paper* the eastern limb is always observed when the
disk of the sun appears to leave the vertical wire* This
will cause the correction for semidiameter s , always to
be added to the horizontal angle reading on the sun k 9
provided the angles are measured in a clockwise direction *

The Gurley Ephemeris recommends at least three successive

readings should be taken with the vertical wire stationary and the

horizontal wire in movement* then an equal number with the horizontal

wire stationary and the vertical wire in movement * The telescope

is then reversed and a second set of six observations made in the

same manner* The average of each set of readings is f o u n d $ then the

average of the two averages used to compute the azimuth*

The above procedure of using the average readings taken over <

period of time is subject to curvature error* Chapter IV deals with

“klason John Nasau* A Textbook of Practical Astr o n o m y * McGraw-


Hill Book Company* Inc* 9 I s W T ^ a g e ^ l 4 3 o
23

the magnitude of this error and methods of correcting for it.

Bisection

The simplest method of sighting the sun is to bisact the sun's

image with both the horizontal and vertical cross h a i r s . Fig. 7

shows the sun's image when correctly bisected.

Fig, 7.— Bisection

This method of pointing is probably the least usei but offers

these advantages:

There is no confusion as to which quadrant the son's image

should be placed.

No correction necessary for semidiameter.

The time required for pointing is less than when osing the

center-tangent or quadrant-tangent method.

The major disadvantage is the difficulty in pointing on the

center of the sun. Philip I n c h , writing in an ASCE transaction, con­

sidered the method of bisection accurate enough to give rasults within


24

one minute of azimuth 0 He wrote the following concerning the problem

of p o i n t i n g .on the s u n 5s center:

This (pointing) is best done by considering the


intersection of the cross h a i r s s as a point and placing
this point in the center of the sun*s image» The human
eye can place a point in the center of a circle with
considerable accuracy % as witness the principle of the
rifle peep s i g h t *1

Like the quadrant-tangent and center-tangent m e t h o d s 9 there

is little agreement as to the observing procedure* The only consis­

tent requirement is that an equal number of observations be taken in

the direct and inverted positions of the telescopee

Solar Filter

The solar filter or darkener is simply a colored glass that

is attached to the eyepiece of a transit* The use of a filter per­

mits direct viewing of the sun without danger of injuring the eye.

For high angles of observation the filter can be used in connection

with a diagonal prism.

The filter must be attached.in such a manner that it is easily

movable. This permits the observer to sight a ground target, move

the filter into position in front of the ey e p i e c e e and then sight the

sun with little delay.

The observing procedures and methods of sighting on the sun

are the same as when using a solar screen. Figs$ 8 and 9 show the

^Philip L, Inch* Simplified Method of Determining True Bearing


Transaction of ASCE, Vol. 102, 1937, page 970.
25

sun as viewed directly through an erecting telescope.

A.M. P.M.

H o r . W i re V e r t . Wire Hor, Wire V e r t . Wire


Stationary Stationary Stationary Stationary

Fig. 8.— Solar F i l t e r : Quadrant-Tangent Method

A.M. P.

Hor. Wire Vert. Wire Hor. Wire Vert. Wire


Stationary Stationary Stationary Stationary

Fig, 9.— Solar F i l t e r : Center-Tangent Method


26

Solar Reticle!

The precision of sighting the sun's center, either by use of

a solar screen or a darkener, can be increased by use of a solar

reticle.

A solar reticle is similar to the reticle in any transit in

that it contains a vertical and horizontal wire. It also contains

stadia hairs and is manufactured with a stadia ratio of either 1:100

or 1:132. The added feature is that it contains a solar circle equal

to the image of the sun's diameter. A solar reticle with a stadia

ratio of 1:100 is shown in fig. 10.

Fig. 10.— Solar Reticle

The solar circle has a radius of 15'-45". This is equal to

the s u n ’s semidiameter when it is at a minimum approximately July 1.

The sun's image can be centered very accurately by superimposing the

circle over the image of the sun. The Bureau of Land Management in

the Manual of Instructions For The Survey of The Public Lands of The

United States 1947, described this advantage of the solar reticle.


"The manipulation of the vertical and horizontal tangent-motions to

the position of concentric fitting, of the circle to the sun's image

may be accomplished with utmost certainty that the values for the

vertical and horizontal angles are exactly simultaneous,"

The use of the solar reticle offers several other advantages.

Observations are faster and both horizontal and vertical angles -are

read to the s u n ’s center. Unlike the quadrant-tangent method, there

is n o difficulty in selecting the correct quadrant or using a stadia

line by mistake. Any single reading may be reduced separately without

a correction for semidiameter. In the event of a suspected misreading

of an angle, the difference between the several sightings, in travel

t i m e v e r t i c a l angle, and horizontal angle, which should be propor­

tional, may be quickly checked.

Simplex Solar Shield

Professor C, H, Wall of Ohio State University developed a

shield to be used for pointing at the center of the sun. It consists

of a perforated shield which is mounted between the eyepiece of the

transit and a solar screen. The perforations and other sighting

points are so arranged that when a selected pair of these points are

brought tangent to the sun's image, the center of the sun's image is

^Bureau of Land Management, Manual of Instructions For The


Survey of The Public Lands of The Unite'd States ,"page 1301
28

on the horizontal or vertical crosshair» Davis and F o o t e 9 in their

well known surveying textbook, show a diagram of successive positions

of the s m V s image with relation to the Simplex solar shield e^

An effort was made to obtain a Simplex solar shield to compare

the accuracy of pointing with other methods» Neither Carl F ti Purtz

of the Civil Engineering Department g Ohio State University s or

M r s 6 Co Ho Wall, wife of the late Professor Wall* could give any

information concerning their manufacture or use®

R oelofs 9 Solar Prism

One of the most recent and refined methods of pointing on the

sun was introduced by Professor R 0 Roelofs of the Technical University

of Delft 9 Holland* It consists of an attachment that fits over the

objective lensof the telescope 6 The attachment contains a series of

prisms that when pointed at the sun produces four images of the sun«

The overlapping images form a bright cross with a small dark square

at the center. Fig, 11 shows this image as seen through a telescope*

^Davis and Foote * op.cit,*page 520


29

Fig, 11.— Reelofs’ Solar Prism

The Roelofs* prism offers several advantages over other

methods of pointing on the sun.

1. The prism contains filters which produce monochromatic

green images of the sun which are comfortable to the observer's

eye and reduce the sunlight and heat which enter the telescope.

When using any other method of pointing a telescope at the sun,

the objective lens acts as a burning glass and causes extreme

heating of the reticle. This heating may result in an irregular

expansion of the crosshairs and an error will occur in both the

vertical and horizontal angles.

2. There is no confusion as to the choice of the quadrant


30

or correction necessary for s@midiameter«

3e The overlapping images provide a better target and result

in a more accurate p o i nting 0

In Professor Roelofs 9 b o o k , aaacraar


Astronomy
■-iitc-Tirt i:..rj sm m rwi&MJS
Applied to Land
n j=r.—iZaxriX zaJK1:.rT r r v - t^3gf?y,-tcu»«e;c«tt=»“»

g he states that a correction is necessary for the eccentri-

city of pointing when using the Roelofs’ prism.^ This correction

is no longer necessary when using the prism as manufactured at the

present times Wild Beerbrugg Instruments 9 Inc, obtained the sole

manufacture rights, and made a minor modificatione Correspondence

with the Wild Beerbrugg Company resulted in the following explanatione

After Professor Roelofs turned over his prism idea to


WILD for fabrication * we found there is an easy way to
bypass, the eccentricity in pointing by inserting another
wedge over the whole objective, That third wedge is
tinted and serves as a sun filter at the same time. This
wedge reflects the centre point of the four sun images
back to the centre of the telescopec Actually in the
WILD solar prism the centering wedge consists of two
(one in front of the half wedges according to Roelofs
and another behind if) for easier adjustment in the
fabrication.

1
R. Roelofs s, Astronomy Applied to Land Surveyinga
N» V, Wed. J, Ahrend 6 Z o o n 9 Am sterdam 9 Holland, 1950, page 70.
CHAPTER IV

CORRECTIONS FOR THE SUN'S

CURVATURE AND SEMIDIAMETER

Semidiameter

The sun's angular semidiameter is defined as the angle subtended

at the earth's center by the sun's radius. Fig. 12 shows this rela­

tionship.

Earth Sun

Fig. 12.— Semidiameter Correction

The semidiameter (S) can be expressed as

r
sin S = —
P

where

r = mean radius of the sun

and

p = distance from the earth's center to the sun's center.

31
32

Since the path of the e a r t h 8s orbit is elliptical the distance

p is constantly changing* This is reflected in the value of S* The

range of S is between 1 5 8” 45" and 1 6 8- 1 7 " e The exact value is given

in the solar ephemeris*

The ephemeris published by the Bureau of Land Management

tabulates the value of S ’


at Greenwich apparent noon for each day of

the year. The value is given to the nearest hundredth second*

The Keuffel and Esser solar ephemeris lists the semidiameter

for every ten days to the hundredth minute. The maximum change in

any ten day period is three seconds.

The Gurley ephemeris gives the value of S to the nearest

second for the first day of each month. The maximum change in

semidiameter in any month is eight seconds, Straightline inter­

polation will give a value sufficiently accurate for all but the most

precise survey work.

Correction to Vertical Angles

Vertical angles turned to s u n 9s upper or lower limb must be

corrected for semidiameter» This correction is simply the tabulated

semidiameter as taken from the ephemeris.

Correction to Horizontal Angles

The correction to a horizontal angle turned to the s u n 9s

limb is a function of the s u n 8s altitude. The relationship between

the sun's semidiameter and altitude is shown in Fig, 13*


33

A B

North South

Fig. 13,— Horizontal Angle Correction for


Sun's Angular Semidiameter

The zenith distance (z) is by definition equal to 90°-h.

The law of sines applied to the right triangle formed by the

center of the sun, the edge of the sun, and the zenith gives

sin A B _ sin 90°


sin S sin z

or

sin A B = s
J^Ll.............................................
sin z
(9)

Eq. (9) can be simplified by the assumption that the sin of a

small angle is equal to the angle expressed in radians. Since the con­
34

version factor for radians will c a ncel 9 the correction to horizontal

angles for semidiameter expressed in the -same unit as S is equal to

B ~ t S x esc z

or

B •** g,,, S X SeC h eoeeeeseeoeeodeeoeeoeosoeGeeAooeeeeeecee C 10 )

Curvature Correction

The authors of most surveying texts dealing with astronomical

measurements recognize the error in assuming the path of the sun is a

straight lineo They frequently place some time limitation on how

long a series of observations may extend when using the mean hori­

zontal and vertical angles of such a series• There is little agree­

ment as to the length of time the sun*s path may be assumed straight

without introducing significant error* A time limitation of ten

minutes is probably the most frequently used, ^*2*3

The effect of using the average horizontal and vertical angles

of a series of observations is shown in Fig, 14, For simplicity, only

two positions'of the sun are shown,

^Bureau of Land Management § Manual o f •Instructions for the


Survey of The Public Lands of The United S t a t e s g 1 9 4 7 9 U, S 6
Government Printing Office $> page 528,

^Charles B, Breeds S u r v eying& John Wiley and Sons* Inc* 9


New York * 1 9 4 2 9 page 141*

^Geologic S u r v e y 9 Topographic Instructions Solar Observations


for Transit T r a verse» Government Printing Office % 1953* page 9 &
3S

Horizon

Fig. 14,-- Effect of Curvature

Point (a) represents the average horizontal pointing on the

sun. The corresponding average altitude (h) is then used to compute

the sun's azimuth. This results in a computed azimuth (B) to point

(b). The difference (C) is known as the curvature error.

Paul Hartman, in a recent paper published by the American

Society of Civil Engineers, investigated the magnitude of this error

and derived a formula for curvature correction.^ The equation is

^Paul Hartman, "Solar-Altitude Azimuth", Journal of the


Surveying and Mapping Division, ASCE, Vol. 89, No. SU1, Proc, Paper
3410, February, 1963.
This formidable appearing equation is solved by parts using

a slide rule and tables. The first expression

A - l a-n- P. H — x (1 ♦ COS2 B)
dh2 sin B

2 2 2
(tan Phi. + tan h) _ sec h (12)
tan B x sin B tan B

and the second term

dh _ cos Phi, x sin t x cos Dec. .............. (13)


dt cos h

are solved by slide r u l e . The last term

At (14)
i l

is computed by use of a table. The most complete table is found in

Special Publication 1 4 , of the U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey.

When (B) is the azimuth of the sun measured from the n o r t h , east

in the A.M. and west in the P.M. , the curvature correction (C) should

always be added tc the value of (B) computed from the mean altitude (h).

Semidiameter Correction

The semidiameter correction applies only to solar observations

where the quadrant-tangent method of pointing is used. Fig. 15 shows

the effect of using the average of two horizontal angles turned to

the s u n ’s limb.

Point (a) represents the bisector of the s u n ’s centers. Point


37

(b) is the bisector of the sun's limbs. The two points do not coincide

since S x secant h^^zf S x secant h^. This error is known as semi­

diameter error.

•H
rV

Horizon
M

Fig, 15.— Effect of Semidiameter

Paul Hartman also derived a correction factor to be used for

semidiameter.^ This factor (Cr) is obtained by solving the following

equation.

Cr = ~ [0.127 x h x 105 + 0.322 x h 3 x 109 +

0.60 x h 5 x 1013 + 0.99 x h 7 x 1017] ^ |At | (15)

^Ibid., page 12.


38

In this equation

S = s u n ’s semidiameter in seconds

n = number of telescope pointings

h ~s u n ’s altitude in degrees

t = difference of individual times of pointing from the

mean time*

The expression dh/dt is given in Eq» (13)*

Hartman states that this equation should be solved by slide

rule® For values of (h) less than 30° only the first two terms inside

the brackets are used* When (h) is less than 40° the first three

terms are used*

The correction (Cr) should be added to the mean clockwise angle

for anA.M* observation and subtracted for a P.M, observation if the

west limb of the sun is used for the initial sighting*

Application

When using the quadrant"tangent method of pointing the effect

of curvature error and semidiameter error tend to cancel one another

provided the observing quadrants are properly chosen» Fig* 16 shows

the sun as viewed directly through an erecting telescope in the

correct quadrants *

In the northern hemisphere the first telescope position of a

pair of pointings is that one which requires the sighting of the west

limb of the sun * By o bserving 9 in this m a n n e r s the horizontal and

vertical angles in the direct position, of the telescope will have

approximately the same values as in the reversed position of the


39

telescope. This results from the movement of the sun during the time

taken to plunge the telescope and make a second sighting. The semi­

diameter error and curvature error are a minimum when the corresponding

angles in the direct and reversed positions of the telescope are about

the same.

A.M. P.M.

Fig. 16.— Quadrant-Tangent

The above method of pointing differs from that shown in

Fig. 8. Pointing as illustrated in Fig. 16 involves tracking the

sun with both the horizontal and vertical motions of the transit.

The curvature and semidiameter error are kept at a minimum only by

sacrificing the accuracy of pointing.

Curvature and semidiamcter corrections must be made if

accurate azimuths are to be determined. If high accuracy is desired

the altitude method should not be used. When the altitude method is

used there are several ways to overcome the effect of both curvature
and semidiameter e r r o r 0

The semidiameter.error will.not exist if pointings are made ■

on the s u n 9s center* This can be accomplished by a number of devices

as pointed out in Chapter III* If pointings are made on the sun ?s

limb then each pointing should be corrected to the s m V s center*

This not only eliminates semidiameter error, but also provides a means

of spotting a misreading of an angle or a poor pointing*

Curvature correction is unnecessary if each observation is

used independently to compute azimuth*

When using the quadrant-tangent method of pointing the average

of each pair of observations taken in diagonally opposed quadrants

should be used to compute azimuth * The time duration will be so

short and the vertical angles so nearly equal that any correction

can be safely neglected*

Consistent azimuth determination by use of the altitude method

demands a low dB/dh value* The corrections for curvature and semi­

diameter are relatively unimportant when the dB/dh ratio is one or

less *

One apparent advantage of the curvature correction is in

building up the horizontal angles * An engineer’s transit reading

only to one minute could be used to measure the horizontal angle to

the s u n ’s center within 10 or 15 seconds if sufficient repetitions

were made * The curvature correction could then be applied to the

azimuth computed by using the- mean altitude (h ) 0 This apparent

advantage is lost when it is realized that the computed azimuth is


dependent on the mean altitude» Regardless of the number of

repetitions the vertical angle to the s u n 9s centers using a one

minute transit % will be no better than one minute

^Winfield H e E l d r i d g e § "Discussion of Solar-Altitude Azimuth"


Proceedings of the Surveying and Mapping Division, No* 34 1 0 § A S C E §
Oct., 1963% ^
CHAPTER V

DETERMINING DECLINATION, LATITUDE,

AND LONGITUDE

Declination

Declination has already been defined as the astronomical

position of the sun north or south of the celestial equator* Dec­

lination is independent of the observer's position as, at any

particular instant, it is the same to all observers in all parts of

the world*

The values of the s u n 9s declination for any given day are

published in the ephemeris* The word ephemeris is of greek origin

meaning diary or calendar* It contains the computed astronomical

positions of P olaris, the sun s and a number of major stars for every

day of the year.

The ephemerides published each year by the surveying instru­

ment manufacturers, such as Keuffel £ Esser and W. £ L. E. Gu r l e y ,

give the sun's declination for 0 hour Greenwich Civil T i m e . This is

the most convenient form for the present day surveyor who determines

time by a radio time signal* Stations such as WWV give the civil

t i m e , and knowing the time zone, the Greenwich Civil Time can be

easily found.

Before the event of wide usage of the radio, it was customary

* 42
43

to determine time by an altitude observation of the sun* The time so

determined was Apparent Time* In this case, it was more convenient

if the declination was given for Greenwich Apparent Noon or 0 hour

Greenwich Apparent Time* This is also the case when a solar

attachment is used and the hour angle must be set off in local

Apparent Time, Since the Bureau of Land Management uses the telescopic

solar transit extensively in its work* the ephemeris published by them

gives the s u n 9s declination for Greenwich Apparent Noon,^

Declination as listed in an ephemeris is called apparent

declination* This means the declination of the sun is measured from

the true celestial equator* Apparent coordinates include all the

effects of proper motion* luni-solar and planetary precession*

nutation* and aberration* It is the apparent coordinates of the sun

that a land-surveyor must use in the astronomical determination of

latitude* longitude* and azimuth.

In all American ephemerides it is the practice to give the

change in declination per hour, Plate 1 is a sample form used in the

computation of declination. It is to be used when the s u n 93 dec­

lination is listed for 0 hour Greenwich Civil Time and the rate of

change in declination per hour is given. The use of such a form saves

time and prevents errors for those surveyors who take solar shots

infrequently,

^United States Department of the Interior* Bureau of Land


Management* Ephemeris of The Sun* Polaris* and Other Selected S t a r s *
United States Governme'nt Printing 0 ffice»
44
Plate 1

COMPUTATION OF S U N ’S DECLINATION

Watch time of observation hr. _sec.

Watch error**- .,o e e o e e e e o o e e o o o e i e o e o o e e e o e Q p e B o e Q min. sec.

Standard time of observation o e o o o o o o e o Jir._ mm, sec.

2
Longitude of central meridian o e f r o e y f f p o e e o e e o i _hr.

Total time since 0 Greenwich e e o e c e o B e Jir«= mm, sec.

Total hours since 0 Greenwich hr.

Apparent Dec. for 0 Greenwich =« © e e e e e o o o e o e o

T f o t a X ho u r s ) (Change in Dec./HrT)^

S lin ^S DG C I m a t l on eeeeeeeoeoBeeoeeooeeo

^Watch error by comparison with radio time signal* Add


difference if watch is slow and subtract difference if watch is fast<

^Longitude of central meridian expressed in time west of


Greenwichi

Eastern Standard Time „,..»,„. 75 meridian *.* *« 5 hre


Central Standard Time « 0 ©*«>©© s 90 meridian Q Q»»© 6 hr e
Mountain Standard Time ....... 105 meridian ..... 7 hr.
Pacific Standard Time ........120 meridian ..... 8 hr0

^Sign as given in E p h emeris,


When using a solar attachment * the s u n 9s declination corrected

for refraction in polar distance9 is usually computed or plotted in

advance* The value of the sun*s refraction is added algebraically

to the tabular declination. T h e refore9 it will increase north or

plus declination and decrease south or minus declinations,

. Plate 2 is an example of one method of plotting a declination

curve to be used with the solar attachment* The straight line is the

declination as taken from an ephemeris with a slope equal to the rate

of change in declination per hour* The curved line is the declination

corrected for refractiono The corrections for refraction are a

function of the altitude of the sun* They can be taken directly from

tables using an argument of declination* latitude* and hour angle*^

When an observation is to be taken* the time is observed and the

corrected declination taken directly from the graph.

The effect of errors in declination on the computed azimuth

will be covered in Chapter V I e

Latitude

Latitude is the angle between the direction of the plumb line

and the plane of the earth*s equator* Latitude is positive when

^United States Department of The Interior* Bureau of Land


Management* Standard Field T a b l e s , U, S, Government Printing Office,
Washington 25 * D, C,
r T*

4 — j— —|
— I :
T —

^ I ait e __2 i' ~i


i
4__ Te e s c o p i c . S o Idr becUnatlion ; S e t tin g 46

March,a; I9 e 4 Ph i,=3 2° -15

, S 6 ° ’5 0

US-7 iOO

M.SvT.
47

measured north and negative when measured south of the equator.

In the United States, latitude can be scaled from a U.S.G.S.

7 1/2 minute quadrangle of 1:24,000 scale with an uncertainty of not

more than * one second. This is based on the following reasoning:

Standard map accuracy for horizontal control requires that the

map position of 90% of checked points be within 1/40 of an inch and

that the other 10% be within 1/20 of an inch of their true positions.

Referring to F i g . 17 and using the mean radius of the earth as

3,959 miles the coverage of a 7 1/2 minute quadrangle can be found.

Pcle

Phi
Equator
3,959 mi

Fig. 17.— Accuracy of Measuring Latitude


48

2 x 3.14 x R - X or X = 8.637 miles


360 x 60 7.5'

Therefore, at a scale of 1:24,000, the length of a 7 1/2' quadrangle

would be:

■?.16.32. *. z 22.80 inches


24 ,000

This would mean that any position that can be located within 1/20 of

an inch on the map represents the following length of arc.

22.80 in. _ 1/20 in.


7.5 x 60 X

X = 0.99 seconds

On a 15 minute quadrangle with a scale of 1:62,500 the above reasoning

results in a maximum error of t 2,6 seconds.

The effect of an error in latitude on the computed azimuth

will be considered in Chapter VI.

Longitude

Longitude can be defined as the angular distance measured

along the equator from a fixed meridian to the meridian of the obser­

ver. The fixed meridian is usually considered as that meridian through

G r eenwich, E n g l a n d , and longitude is considered positive when reckoned

westward from that point.

The accuracy of determining the longitude of an instrument

station by scaling from a map is dependent on the latitude of that

station. For a given scale map the closer the station is to the

equator the more accurate longitude can be determined.


49

Excluding Alaska the maximum error in longitude in the United

States , obtained by scaling from a U.S.G.S. map, would occur at a

latitude of 49°, The magnitude of this error can be computed by

referring to Fig. 18,

Pole

Phi
Equator

Fig. 18.— Accuracy of Measuring Longitude

The circumference (Cir.) of the earth at a latitude of 49°

equals

2 x 3.14 x r

Using the mean radius of the earth (R) as 3,959 miles and substituting

for r

Cir. = 2 x 3.14 x R x cos 49° = 16,312.3 miles

The coverage of a 7 1/2 minute quadrangle (X) would be


50

X _ 16,312.3
7.5 360 x 60

X = 5.66 miles

At a scale of 1:24,000 the length of this quadrangle would be

= 14.9 inches
24,000

If a position can be located on the quadrangle to an accuracy of 1/20

of an inch then the resulting error in longitude (L) would be

L _ 7.5 x 60
.05 “ 14.9

or

L = 1.51 seconds

The same reasoning will result in a maximum error of 1.17 seconds at

T u c s o n , using a latitude of 32°-151.

If the procedure is repeated for a 1 5 1 minute quadrangle at a

scale of 1: 62,500 the following results are obtained.

Latitude Error in Longitude from Scaling

32°-15’ ------------------------ 3.08 seconds

49°-- ---— — — — — — — — — 3.95 seconds

When determining azimuth by the altitude method there is no

need to measure longitude. On the other hand use of the hour angle

method requires the accurate measurement of longitude. The time of

the observation together with the longitude of the station are used to

compute the local hour angle. The effect of an error in hour angle

on the bearing of the sun will be considered in Chapter V I I ,


CHAPTER VI

AZIMUTH BY THE ALTITUDE OF THE SUN

Introduction

The determination of azimuth by the altitude of the sun is the

most commonly used method in the United States. Unlike the hour angle

method it does not require an accurate measurement of time. Survey­

ing textbooks and solar ephemerides published annually by instrument

manufacturers explain this method in detail. The civil engineering

student may hear of other methods of determining azimuth by solar

observation, but it is highly probable that in his college course

w o r k , the altitude method is the only one he will use.

Trigonometric Formulas

The basic equation for the solution of the astronomical tri­

angle when the altitude is known was derived in Chapter II. It will be

repeated here along with a number of other equations used in the

altitude method. The e q uations, though different in appearance, are

basically the same. All equations require knowing the latitude of the

station and the altitude and declination of the sun.


52

cos B s ..... A ^ .n Dec* ^ .. tan h x tan P h i ............... (17)


cos h x cos Phi.

tan 2 1/2 B = sin(s-h) x sin(s-Phi.)........................ (18)


cos s x cos(s-p)

s ec 2 1/2 B = (19)
sec h x sec Phi.

vers B = sec Phi. x sec h [vers p - vers(Phi.-h)] ..... (20)

Each term in Eq. (5) has already been defined. The value of

(h) used in this equation and all equations involving the s u n ’s alti­

tude must be corrected for refraction and parallax. In Eq. (5)

azimuth is measured from the north. If the observation was taken in

the morning the bearing is east of n o r t h , if taken in the afternoon

west of north. When a minus value results from the solution of Eq. (5)

azimuth is measured from the s o u t h , east in the A . M . , and west in the

P.M.

Eq. (16) is identical with Eq. (5) with the exception of the

sign. In this case a positive sign indicates the azimuth is measured

from the s o u t h , and a negative sign means the azimuth is measured from

the north. Again it is measured east in the A.M. and west in the P.M.

Dividing each term in the numerator of Eq, (5) by cos h x

cos Phi. results in Eq. (17).

An interesting variation of Eq. (17) was derived by Philip

I n c h .^ Starting with

cos B = Sj-P. --- tan h x tan Phi. ........... (17)


cos h x cos Phi.

^Tnch, op.cit., page 971


The resulting equation was

cos B = A x sin Dec. - B ................... ............. (21)

Tables were then arranged using arguments of (h) and (Phi.).

Values of (h) from 15° to 55° were plotted against values of (Phi.)

from 31° to 49°. Values of (A) and (B) could be taken directly from

the tables. The tables included correction for refraction and

parallax.

Eq. (18) is an application of the half angle formula to E q . (5).

A step by step derivation can be found in most texts of spherical

trigonometry.* The polar distance (p) = 90° - Dec. and s = l/2(p + h

+ Phi.) are used for the first time in this equation.

Eq. (19) is similar to Eq. (18) but involves only one trig­

onometric func t i o n , the secant. It was derived by T. F. Nickerson

by a number of substitutions in the basic half angle formula for

cos B/2. Eq. (19) has two advantages over any of the other altitude

^William L. Hart, College Trigonometry, D. C. Heath and


Co m p a n y , Boston, Mass., 1951, page 193.

^T. F. Nickerson, Determination of Position and Azimuth by


Simple and Accurate Meth o d s , Transactions of A&CE, Vol. 114, 1949,
page 143.
54

equations« It deals entirely with one function and in case logarithms

are used the characteristics will always be positive. Plate 3 is a

sample form to be used in computing azimuth by Eq. (19). The form is

patterned after that of Hickerson in his book* Latitude* Longitude* and

Azimuth by The Sun or S t a r s A table of log secants is used and the

solution requires no multiplication. To those who use logarithms

- infrequently the use of such a form, saves both time and costly errors,

Eq, (20) makes use of the versed sine (1 minus the cosine). By

exchanging the p o lar distance (p) for 90°- Dec, and use of the double­

angle formula it reduces to Eq. (5).

Factors Affecting The Measuring of Altitude

The altitude method of solar observation is directly dependent

on how good the vertical angle can be measured to the s u n ’s center.

There are a number of factors that can contribute to incorrect vertical

angles. These factors will be considered"in the following paragraphs, -

Instrument Error

The first source of error would be in the adjustment of the

instrument. There are three major conditions that result in erroneous

vertical angles.

1. The vertical axis out of plumb.

^T. F. H i c k e r s o n „ Latitude* Longitude* and Azimuth by The Sun


or Stars * published by the A u t h o r a Chapel Hill* N.C, 9 1947* page 40,
55

Plate 3

DETERMINATION OF AZIMUTH
By Use of Log Secants

Sec. 2 l/2 B =

B = Horizontal angle from north reckoned east in A.M. and


west in P.M.

P = 90o-Dec.

S = 1/2(P + h + Phi.)

89°- 59'- 60" Subtract

Dec. Log Sec. x 10'

P =
1
Add

h = i

Phi. =
r-

28 =
q
S = T3
XI
<
'O S-P =
"O
<
S—h =
Subtract

Alg. Sum = Phi. (check)

1/2 Z =

Z =

^North Dec. is + and is subtracted.


South Dec. is - and is added.
56

2» A lack of parallelism between the line of sight and the

axis of the telescope level,

3<> The displacement of the vertical vernier from its adjusted

position.

The first condition,.inclination of the vertical a x i s , is the

most serious. Unlike the other two sources of instrumental e r r o r $ it

cannot be eliminated by observational procedure. It can be reduced to

a negligible amount by careful leveling of the transit.

The most exact method of leveling a transit is by use of the

telescope bubble. The procedure is as follows: After the instrument

is leveled using the plate bubbles a the telescope is brought over a

pair of leveling screws with the (A) vernier set to 0°, Center the

telescope bubble by using the vertical clamp and tangent screw. The

upper motion is released and the telescope rotated 180° as shown by the

reading on the (A) vernier. If the telescope bubble is not centered»

bring it halfway to the center by use of the vertical tangent screw

and the remaining way by using the two leveling screws. The upper

motion is released and the telescope rotated to its initial position.

The telescope bubble should remain centered. If it does n o t 8 repeat

the process of bringing it halfway to the center by use of the tangent

screw and the remaining way by use of the two leveling screws. When

the bubble remains centered at both 0 ° and 180° the telescope is

rotated until the (A) vernier reads 90° or 270°, This places the

telescope in line with the other pair of leveling screws. The


57

telescope bubble is now centered by use of the leveling screws only.

This completes the operation and makes the vertical axis of the

transit truly vertical.

The error resulting from measuring a vertical angle when the

transit has not been carefully leveled is shown in Fig. 19.

Angle (H) is the angle of inclination of the vertical axis.

The axis lies in a vertical plane that deviates from the vertical

plane containing the sun by the angle (Z). The error in the measured

vertical angle is equal to (H) when (Z) = 0 ° and 0° when (Z) = 90°.

Sun

Fig. 19.— Instrument Error


58

The angle (H) can be accurately measured by means of the tele­

scope b u b b l e « The sensitivity of the bubble is the angle of inclina­

tion in seconds of arc per division of bubble run« This means that

when using an E n g ineer’s transit, with a telescope bubble having a

sensitivity of 60 s e c o n d s e the displacement of the bubble by one-half

of a division could result in an error of 30 seconds in the vertical

angle.

The second and third condition can be corrected by adjustment

of the transit or eliminated by the observational procedure.

The adjustment for a lack of parallelism between the line of

sight and the axis of the telescope level is known as the peg adjust­

ment. It is explained in detail in any surveying textbook or instru­

ment manual.

The Vertical vernier can be checked for adjustment after the

instrument has been carefully leveled using the telescope bubble.

When the bubble is centered, the vertical angle should be 0 °, If it

is not the vernier is loosened and moved until the correct reading is

obtained.

The error resulting from a lack of parallelism between the

line of sight and the axis of the telescope level, or from displace­

ment of the vertical-circle vernier, or a combination of the two,.is

known as index error. Adjustment for index error is unnecessary if

the transit has a full vertical circle. When the vertical axis of

the transit is truly vertical, the mean of two vertical angles, one
59

taken with the telescope direct and the other with the telescope

rever s e d 9 is free from index error.

Another possible source of error would be imperfections in the

manufacture of the instrument. Such things as eccentricity and

imperfect graduations are relatively unimportant in a modern transit

in good adjustment and can be ignored in all but the most precise work.

The magnitude of the instrument error is almost completely

dependent on how carefully the transit has been leveled when using

correct procedure in measuring a vertical angle.

Refraction

As light travels from the sun to the e a r t h , it passes from

the empty interstellar space into the e a r t h ’s atmosphere. As the

height above the earth's surface diminishes„ the density and tempera­

ture of the air increases. This results in the ray of light being

bent vertically downward. There are a number of equations that have

been derived t o correct for this phenomenon. The basic equations are

based on a number of assumptions. It is assumed that the atmosphere

is built up of an infinite number of infinitely thin spherical layers

concentrical with the e a r t h , and each having a uniform refractive

index throughout.

An equation can be derived by ignoring the curvature of the

layers and assuming the number and thickness to be finite. Applying

Snell's Law of refraction to Fig. 2 0 * the following equation can be

written.
60

E ar t h ’s Surface

Fig. 2 0 ,— Refraction

sin Z,, U3
7 n r r 3 * un

In this equation (U) is the index of refraction and in the case

of a vacuum is equal.to 1. Therefore,

t sin Zn = sin Z 3 x U3 ....................................... (22)

If Snell's Law is applied to the succeeding layers the following

equations can be w r i t t e n :

U3 x sin Z3 = U 2 x sin Zg

U2 x sin Z2 = Ujl x sin Z^

by substitution Eq. (22) becomes

sin zn ° x sin Z ^ ............................... ........ (23)


Cl
since

refraction (r) = Zfi -

or

zn = z x + r

Eq. (23) becomes

sin (Z^ + r) = x sin Z^ .......................... . (24)

Expanding Eq. (24) by use of the addition formula results in

sin Z jl x cos r + cos Z^ x sin r = x sin Z^

Since (r) is a small a n g l e , usually less than 35 minutes,the cosine

of (r) is approximately one. Therefore,

sin Z^ t cos Zjl x sin r = x sin Zj


If refraction (r) is expressed in radians then for a small angle sin r

is approximately equal to (r). Then

sin Z jl + cos Z jl x r = Ui x sin Z^

or

r = tan Zjj x (U^ - 1) ...................... (25)

It should be noted that in this formula that only the index

of refraction for the lowest layer appears. This equation gives good

results when the zenith distances are so small that the assumption of

horizontal planes is reasonably correct.

An empirical equation has been derived by Comstock that gives

a closer approximation.^

^Nassau, op.cit., page 66,


62

r - H H t x tan z / ..................................... (26)

where

r = refraction in seconds of arc.

b = barometric pressure in inches,

t = temperature in degrees Fahrenheit.

= observed zenith distance.

According to N a s s a u , for zenith distances under 75°, Eq. (26)

should give the refraction within one second.

A number of tables are available that list the mean refraction

and give both temperature and pressure corrections. Two of the most

complete tables are found in U.S.C. & G.S. Special Publication No. 247
i o
and in Seven Place Logarithmic Tables by Von Vega. »

When solar observations are taken with a oneminute transit

the surveyor should not be overly concerned with the temperature and

barometric pressure corrections to the tabulated refraction. Unless

observations are made at extreme temperatures and at high elevations

the corrections are relatively unimportant. Host of the azimuth

determinations in the United States are made at an elevation between

sea level and 2000 ft. and temperatures between 0 ° and 100° Fahren­

heit. This would result in a maximum error of 18 seconds if correc-

^U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Special Publication No. 2 4 7 ,


Government Printing Office, Washington 25, D. C . , Tables 25, 26, and 27.

^Baron Von V e g a , Seven Place Logarithmic T a b l e s , D. Van Nostrand


Company, Inc., Princeton, New Jersey.
tions were ignored for an altitude observation of 15°.

The correction for refraction is always subtracted from the

observed altitude.

One of the most common sources of error in computing refrac­

tion is due to a local variation in temperature and pressure. This

variation can be caused by the close proximity of lakes, forests, or

buiIdings.

Parallax

Parallax is the correction to the observed zenith distance

to the sun, measured from a point on the earth's surface, necessary

to represent the zenith distance from the earth's center. The

parallax of the sun for any observed zenith distance can be obtained

by referring to Fig. 21.

Sun
Horizon

Fig. 21.— Parallax


64

By the Law of Sines

sin p _ sin (180° - %/)


" R “•---------- d..... ................................... (27)

where

= observed zenith distance

R = radius of the earth

p = sun's parallax

d = distance of sun from the center of the earth

Again referring to Fig. 21 the horizontal parallax (p) is equal to:

sin p/ = £ ..................... (28)


d

From Eq, (27)

sin p = ~ x (sin 180° x cos - cos 180° x sin Z^)


d
or

R /
sin p = — x sin Z'
d

substituting the value of R/d from Eq. (28) gives

sin p = sin p/ x sin Z ^ .......... (29)

The horizontal parallax of the sun is given in the American

Ephemeris for each day of the year. It has a maximum value of 8.95

seconds and a minimum value of 8 . 6 6 seconds. This gives an average

value of 8.80 seconds. In place of computing the sun's parallax by

Eq. (29) a satisfactory expression can be obtained as follows. Using

the average value of the sun's horizontal parallax and realizing that

the value of (p) will always be less than p / , an approximate solution


65

to Eq. (29) can be written

p = 8.80 sin ...... (30)

The parallax correction is added to the vertical angle to

correct the altitude observation to the center of the earth.

Altitude Correction for Semidiameter

If in making a solar observation the limb or edge of the sun

is observed, the vertical angle must be corrected to the center of

the sun. If the upper limb of the sun is used, the semidiameter is

subtracted from the altitude. If the lower limb is observed, the

semidiameter is added to the altitude.

The sun's semidiameter is dependent on the distance between the

sun and the earth. This distance is constantly changing due to the

ellipticity of the earth's orbit around the sun. The semidiameter

is tabulated in the solar ephemeris for each day of the year.

Effect of Errors in Altitude on the Computed Azimuth

The equation most frequently used to compute the sun's azimuth

by the altitude method was derived in Chapter II. This equation

n - sin Dec. - sin h x sin Phi. , c\


cos ti - .... — ■ ■ v” .............I,— lb;
cos h x cos Phi.

can be differentiated with respect to (h) holding (Dec.) and (Phi.)

constant. After simplifying the equation becomes

dB tan Phi. - tan h x cos B ,


dFT ----------- sTiTB........... ............................. (31)
66

As the sun's bearing approaches the meridian at noon the value

of (B) will approach 90° and an error in altitude will have the greatest

effect on the computed azimuths

Since the measured altitude to the s u n ’s center is subject to

a number of factors that may introduce e r r o r , the dB/dh ratio is

probably the most important criterion as to the accuracy of the

altitude method. Inspection of the dB/dh ratio will tell the surveyor

the possible error in a computed azimuth for a given probable error in

the measured altitude, <

The dB/dh ratio can be obtained at the time of the observation

by comparing the difference in two horizontal angles to the s u n ’s

center with the difference between two corresponding vertical angles

to the s u n ’s center, A more useful method would be one that would

tell the surveyor at what time, on any given date, he must take an

observation to obtain a desired dB/dh ratio. This can be accomplished

by means of an altitude-azimuth curve.

Inspection of Eq, (31) shows that the dB/dh ratio is dependent

on the latitude of the observing station. Sufficiently accurate

altitude-azimuth curves can be developed by using the latitude of a

central station in the area of interest.

The curves can be developed by either of two methods, Eq, (5)

can be solved for (B) by assuming different values of (h) for a given

declination and latitude. An easier method is by the use of prepared


tables that give the values of (B) for a given ( h ) , (Phi.), and

X
(Dec.). If tables are used the hour angle is also given and may be

plotted together with the altitude and azimuth. Eq. (31) is then

solved for different values of dB/dh and the results plotted on the

altitude-azimuth curves. Plate 4 is an example of the altitude-

azimuth curves for T u c s o n , Arizona, with both hour angle and dB/dh

curves superimposed.

Once such curves have been developed for a particular area,

limits can be established on when observations should be taken. For

example, a limiting value of the dB/dh ratio equal to 1.5 would be

reasonable at Tucson, This would assure consistent results and at

no time require an altitude measurement less than 2 0 °»

Effect of Errors in Declination on the

Computed Azimuth
<niri—B" m..., /T

When the altitude method of determining azimuth is employed,

the only reason for observing the time is in the computation of dec­

lination, The maximum change in declination per hour is approximately,

sixty seconds. This means that for the most accurate work, a deter­

mination of time within two minutes would result in an error no

larger than two seconds in declination. When taking a solar shot with

•^Tables of Computed Altitude and A z imuth, Hydrographic Office


P u b l i c a t i ^ % o r ° ° ^ T ^ T ° W ^ T % a % y T ^ T ? T ° ^ ^ % S e n t Printing Office,
Washington, D. C. „
ak ljT U D E -A zlM U T h

Tucs o n, Arizona

r r - B ' m m g ^ d f ' S u f T l f r 6 hii“ ]Squ™f>i r ' E ijs T T n STM': v \ W e s T Tn"“R'Tff


I ; i : i.:
• •• • ; I • ' ' I t •. '! • .. • I ... •.
an engin e e r ’s transit, with horizontal and vertical verniers reading

to one minute, and the rate of change in the s u n ’s declination an

average value of 25 seconds per hour, a determination of time within

twenty minutes is normally sufficient. The effect of an error in

declination on the computed azimuth can be determined for any latitude

Deferentiating the altitude Eq. (5) and holding (Phi.) and (h)

constant results in the following expression.

dB _ cos Dec. (32)


dDec sin B x cos k x cos Hii. .... .

The above equation was solved for a latitude of 32°-15’ with

the aid of the altitude-azimuth curves. Plate 5 is a plot of dB/dDec.

against the sun's altitude. Observations taken with a dB/dh ratio of

two or less result in a maximum dB/dDec. ratio of 3.

By the use of Plate 5 the effect of an error in time can be

quickly determined. Assume an observation was taken on October 10,

1963, with a dB/dh ratio of approximately 1. The s u n ’s declination

for this date is - 60-17', The change in declination per hour is

56.93 seconds. The dB/dDec. ratio as taken from Plate 5 equals 1.5.

An error in time of 2 0 minutes would result in an error in declination

of 19 seconds and an error in azimuth of 28 seconds.

When the altitude method of determining azimuth is being used

the time can be obtained by calculation or by use of a nomograph such


zmtt ot An: Er r
Th e S dBear in

a iTtrrff

±L:_

j.r

Sun s A 11 1 1 u d e
71

as that of Roelofs.^ The time obtained by use of the nomograph will

be correct within two or three minutes if the longitude of the station

is k n o w n ,

Effect of Errors in Latitude on the

Computed Azimuth

The effect of an error in latitude on the computed azimuth can

be found by taking the derivitive of the sun's bearing with respect

to latitude. The following expression results from differentiating

Eq. (5) while holding altitude and declination constant,

dB _ sin h - sin Phi. x sin Dec. t qot


■■ ■
» - — •* '■ ■ *#*##**»**########## \ VU J
dPhi. sin B x cos^Phi. x cos h

A simpler method of expressing dB can be obtained by use of Eq, (4)


dPhi.
and Eq. (G).

cot t - c fs t sin h - sin Phi, x sin Dec.


co ” sin t cos P'hi. x cos Tfi x sin B

By substitution

_dB = cot t = sec P h i . ..................... (3 4 )


dPhi. cos Phi. tab t

Plate 6 shows the effect of latitude and hour angle on the

dB/dPhi. ratio. It can be seen that at the sixth hour angle the dB/dPhi.

ratio is always zero. For any other hour ang l e , the higher the latitude,

^Roelofs, op.cit., page 214.


Effect of I fftnde-'tnri
(IPhi.

4 9° -Ot

sec Phi
tan t

— f *"- 1.'— i t
% L U l JLU
•— l - M - L L I - 4

Angle
the greater the dB/dPhi« r a t i o e

Plate 7 is a plot of the altitude-azimuth curves for a

latitude of 320~ 1 5 # with the dB/dPhi, curves superimposed« Inspection

of the c u r v e s 8 shows that observations taken when the hour angle is

greater than two, result in a dB/dPhi, ratio of two or less. When

an uncertainty of latitude.exists, it is well to take solar obser­

vations either early in the morning or as late in the afternoon as

possible.

Field Procedure for Observations

The instrument is set up over a selected point and carefully

leveled. The horizontal circle is set to read 0°-00,-00". The

lower motion is released and a sight is taken along the given line to

a fixed reference point. The lower motion is locked, the upper

motion released, and a pointing made on the sun. The sighting is

accomplished by use of one of the methods in Chapter III. The hori­

zontal and vertical angle and the time are read and recorded. The

instrument is again pointed at the fixed reference point and the

horizontal reading checked to see if it agrees with the initial

reading of 0o” 0 0 e-00,,o This would complete a single altitude

observation on the sun. Assuming the latitude of the station is

known all necessary measurements have been made to determine the

bearing of the given line.


■r '•
4 l i L t u d e :ii: A z i m j u t fi

4iPhk

Pilate
50
It should be pointed out that in actual practice a series of

observations are made on the s u n s rather than relying on a single

observation. The procedure for taking a series of observations

varies widely and was discussed in Chapter III,


CHAPTER VII

AZIMUTH BY THE HOUR ANGLE

OF THE SUN

Introduction

The hour angle method of determining azimuth by the sun has

been rejected in favor of the altitude method by a large percentage

of surveyors. This was understandable in the past when the only

accurate method of determining time was by observing the meridian

passage of the s u n @ P o l a r i s s or one of the equatorial stars. The

present day surveyor has little justification in overlooking a method

that is superior to the altitude method in that it is limited in

accuracy only by the pointing ability of the instrument used.

Determining azimuth by the hour angle method requires knowing

the precise time of observation and the longitude of the observing

station. The altitude of the sun, the factor which is subject to a

number-of errors, is not used in computing azimuth by the hour, angle

method.

Trigonometric Formulas

The basic equation was derived in Chapter II. It will be

repeated here along with a number of variations.


To conform to north as zero azimuth Eq. ( 8 ) should be rewritten

u _ 1sin Phi. x cos t -u ■cos Phi. x tan Dec. / \


C O t D — m m m mmmm ■ wi ■ ■■ i # # # # # # # # # # \ V U /
sin t

If the solution of this equation results in a positive (B)

then the azimuth of the sun is reckoned clockwise from the north.

Since the cot function is positive from 0° to 90° and 180° to 270° the

sun will be in the first quadrant for A.M. observations and in the

third quadrant for P.M. observations.

If the value of (B) is negative then the azimuth of the sun is

reckoned counter clockwise from the north. This will place the sun in

the fourth quadrant for P.M. observations and in the second quadrant

for A.M. observations.

Confusion as to the correct bearing of a line when using

Eq. (35) can be avoided by use of the following equations.

cot B is positive and A.M. observation

. Az. =B + . H . ....... (36)

cot B is positive and P.M. observation

Az. =B + H + 180° (37)


.

cot B is negative and A.M. observation

Az. =B + H + 180° .................... (38)

cot B is negative and P.M. observation

Az. =B + H + 360° .................. (39)

The above equations will give the azimuth (Az.) of the line

measured in a clockwise direction from the north. The horizontal angle


78

(H) used in Eq. (36) to (39) must be the clockwise angle from the sun

to the target. In Eq. (38) and (39) the value of (B) will be negative.

If Eq. (35) is inverted and both the numerator and denominator are

divided by cos Phi. x tan Dec. then

tan B • sin t x sec Phi, x cot Dec. .................. (40)


tan Phi. x cos t x cot Dec. - 1

By letting

tan Phi. x cos t x cot Dec. = a

Eq. (40) becomes

tan B « sin t x sec Phi. x cot Dec. x __1_ ............. (41)


1 -a

The solution to Eq. (41) is facilitated by use of tables

prepared for finding the log 1 / 1 -a directly from log a.

Determining the Hour Angle of the Sun

The local hour angle of the sun is the angle at the pole from

the meridian westward to the hour circle through the body. Measurement

of the sun's hour angle requires the accurate knowledge of both time

and longitude. Since a number of kinds of time are in common usage,

the surveyor must have an understanding of the measurement of time.

The measurement of time is based on the rotation of the earth

on its axis. This rotation can be measured with respect to a number

of celestial objects. If the sun is used to observe the earth's

lu. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Special Publication 1 4 , U. S.


Government Printing Office, Washington, D. C.
79
rotation the time is called solar time. Solar time is divided into

three classesi apparent time* mean timeg and standard time.

Apparent time is based on the real sun. An apparent solar

day is the interval of time between two successive transits, either

upper or lower 8 of the sun over the meridian of that place. Owing to

the obliquity of the ecliptic and the lack of uniformity of the motion

of the earth in its orbit the apparent time rate is irregular®

Mean solar time is based upon a fictitious or imaginary sun

whose solar day is mathematically uniform. Since mean solar time is

uniform and regular in its passage e clocks and watches in ordinary

use are designed t o be rated for a 24 hour period that conforms to

the mean sun. Civil time has the same-meaning as mean solar time.

The equation of time is the difference in hour angle between

the true sun and the mean sun. It is counted in the mean time rate.

The equation of time is changing constantly and its value for each

d a y „ on the Greenwich m e r i d i a n , is tabulated in the ephemeris.

Standard time is the mean solar time on the central meridian

of each time belt. Standard meridians, beginning at Greenwich,

E n g l a n d 6 are established each 15° of longitude around the globe.

Local mean time is identical with mean solar time on the

meridian at the station where the time is being employed. Stations

that are 1 ° apart in longitude differ by four minutes in local mean

time.

If the time of observation is measured on a watch keeping


standard time the following steps are necessary to determine the local

hour angle.

The Greenwich civil time (G.C.T.) of the observation is found

by correcting for the longitude of the central meridian, if the

observing station is in the United States then

G.C.T, = Standard Time + Longitude of Central Meridian .. (42)

The correction for the longitude of the central meridian must

be expressed in time. Since the central meridians for the time zones

are 15° apart the correction will be in even hours.

The equation of time for the day of observation is taken from

the ephemeris and corrected for the time of observation. In both the

Gurley and K. 6 E. solar ephemerides the equation of time is given for

midnight G.C.T, along with the correction per hour. The corrected

value can be found by using the G.C.T, computed in Eq» (42)6

Eq, of Time 3 Tabulated Value t Diff./Hr, x G.C.T, (43)

The Greenwich apparent time (G.A.T.) is computed by use of the

corrected equation of time, -

G.A.T. 3 G.C.T, t E q . of Time ...e.,,,,,,,...,...,,,,.,,. (44)

and

G.H.A. = G.A.T. - 12hr

The Greenwich hour angle (G.H.A.) is then used in calculating

the local hour angle (t). The relationship between the two is shown

in Fig. 22.
81

For longitudes west of Greenwich it can be seen that

t = G.H.A, - Longitude of S t a t i o n .................. (45)

It is the local hour angle (t) that is used in computing

azimuth by the hour angle of the sun.

Sun
Local
Meridian

Greenwich
Meridian

Fig, 22.-- Relationship Between the Greenwich

Hour Angle and Local Hour Angle

Factors Affecting the Measurement of

the Sun's Hour Angle

As was seen in the preceding section the local hour angle is

computed by knowing the precise time of observation, the equation of

t i m e , and the longitude of the observing station. Since an error in

any of these factors will result in an error in hour angle the

measurement of each factor will be considered.


82

Time of Observation

Several methods are available to the surveyor to determine the

precise time of each observation. The method and equipment used in

determining time should be consistent with the type of instrument and

the desired accuracy of the azimuth determination.

In the most precise, work where an instrument such as the Wild

Tg is being u s e d 9 the time of each observation is frequently measured

by means of a chronograph. This is an instrument„ which by means of a

recording p e n 9 produces a graphic record of the passage of time. Each

time an observation is made the observer presses a signal key which

causes an offset in the record which can be read to the nearest hund™

redth of a second. The chronograph is an expensive instrument and

its use is neither justified or necessary in most survey work.

The development of light, weight and moderately priced tran­

sistor radios with short wave bands offer another method of accurately,

determining time. "It has been found that when using a simple stop

watch and short wave receiver in the field, the time of sun pointings

can be determined to the nearest 0 . 1 second,"^

Time can be consistently measured within 0,2 seconds by use of

a stop watch and an accurate time piece. In the past it was necessary

to use a special built chronometer to insure accurate time keeping.

^Winfield H, E l d r i d g e» "Purpose and Procedures for Meridian


Determinations", Proceedings^ Illinois Land Surveyors C o n f . , RLSA,
Vol. Ill, Urbana,™rTTT%^T^D2%™page™l5Tr^^™^™^°™™^ ™™^^^*™^™'
83

The chronometer was wound at regular intervals and the chronometer

rate was to some extent dependent on its position. The recent develop-

ment by the Bulova Watch Company of the Accutron wrist timepiece has

made the need for a chronometer unnecessary. This watch operated by

an electronically driven tuning fork has an amazingly uniform rate

that is independent of position.

The least accurate method but the one most frequently used is

time by calling out. The observer calls "time" at the instant the

sighting is made and the recorder immediately reads the survey time­

piece. Care must be taken to read the second h a n d 9 the minute hand*

and the hour hand in that order. The accuracy of this method depends

on the reflexes of both the observer and the recorder. Accuracy no

better than the nearest second should be expected.

The Equation of Time

The equation of time is tabulated in the ephemeris for every

day of the year. The ephemeris published by the Bureau of Land

Management simply list® the equation of time for Greenwich apparent

noon for each day of the year. The ephemerides published both by the

Gurley and the Keuffel 6 Esser Instrument Companies list the equation

of time for 0 hour Greenwich Civil time for each date. They also give

the hourly change in the equation of time.

. If an accuracy of 0.1 second is sufficient straightline

interpolation can be used to find the equation of time for the time of
84

observation. If greater accuracy is needed a method of second differ­

ences must be used. Roelofs presented a nomogram to facilitate finding

this second term.^

Longitude of Observing Station

The solution of Eq. (45) for the local hour angle involved

the longitude of the observing station. It was seen in Chapter V

that the maximum error in longitude, resulting from scaling from a

U.S.G.S. map, would be less than four seconds. It must be remembered

that this four seconds is in terms of arc and not time. The equiva­

lent unit of time would be 0.267 seconds.

Probable Error

The probable error in determining the hour angle of the sun

can be computed by using the above limits. If time is measured by

means of a stop watch and an accurate timepiece, the equation of

time is obtained by straightline interpolation, and longitude is

scaled from a U.S.G.S. map the following probable error could be

expected.

^ [(0.2)2 + (0.1)2 + (0.27)2]= ♦ Q.35"

Effect of an Error in Time on the Computed Azimuth

The effect of an error in time on the computed azimuth can be

found by differentiating Eq. ( 8 ) with respect to t, while holding

^Roelofs, op.c l t . , page 211.


85

declination and latitude constant. This gives the following equation.

dB _ cot t x cot B -f sin Phi. ^ ................... . ^ (46)


dt csc^ B

This equation was solved with the aid of the altitude-azimuth

curves for a latitude of 32°-15f North. The results are shown in

Plate 8 . Inspection of the curves indicate that observations should

be limited to an hour angle greater than two. This would give a

maximum dB/dt ratio of approximately 1. At this ratio, a one second

error in time will cause a 15 second error in azimuth.

If observations are taken only at an hour angle greater than

four the maximum error in azimuth due to a one second error in time

would be 1 0 seconds. It must be remembered that the error in time

could be in any of the three factors; time of observation, equation

of t i m e , or longitude of observing station.

Field Procedure for Observations

Since the hour angle method requires very accurate time

control, it is essential that the survey timepiece be checked for

accuracy both before and after an azimuth determination. The

easiest method of obtaining the correct time is by means of a radio

time signal.

A number of stations broadcast time signals in the United

States. The best known of these is probably WWV transmitting on

frequencies of 2.5, 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 megacycles from


Rate

zt m a t h
Seconc Err or r
'• * ‘ * + t ; * ; r'
! '* H i t T H

I: III L a 4ti
I — — L
111 jlB i 0 0

l T :n " r n . • ^ i i j r . i ±
J—h+- r-4-•- - r r i t n ; #
I1" ; .r i- r -- I - - t ]
; : m > 2 3 ’x +-<- 1 --j r
t . t l i : i . t ' |:r l l r l l l l
‘I! t— (--- I— t

I■1 1 1 4 - !0
V
, "I : iltil: I

♦- ♦ • 4- j 4 -+
i 4- i- --1 i- ♦ - i —j J i t ’’.' :1 -j
♦ -4- - I— |— +- *- —|— ♦- I - . | ~— t 1 -* ♦ —* j-

1t-'it-t-tt:;: T—[-)-*"h■* ♦- -|


I «■— 4M r-f-
1: :f
••♦ 4
n ■Lili h'-B

ti

- - 4 4-
87'

Washington, D„ C, They give the Eastern Standard Time every five

minutes. Two new radio stations operated by the National Bureau of

Standards are now in operation. They are W W V B „ a low-frequency

station transmitting at 60 kilocycles, and WWVL, the very-low-

frequency station, at 2 0 kilocycles. These stations, near Fort

Collins, Colorado, are now transmitting frequency signals accurate

to a millionth, of a second, A system of equally accurate time

signals will be added in the near future.

Checking the timepiece before and after a series of obser­

vations establishes the rate of the timepiece. The watch or chron­

ometer used may run fast or slow without harm as long as the time

rate is constant. Straightline interpolation will give the correction

to apply to the time of each observation.

Since the longitude of the observing station is used in

computing the hour angle of the sun, a station should be selected that

can be found on a U.S.G.S, map. The observing station can be an

identifiable point on the map or it can be carefully tied to such a

point. Either method will allow scaling the longitude.

The instrument is set up over a selected point and cafefully

leveled. The horizontal circle is set to read 0 °- 0 0 ,- 0 0 ,’» The Ipwer

motion is released and a sight is taken along the given line to a

fixed reference point. The lower motion is locked and the upper

motion released* and a pointing made on the sun. Sighting on the

sun is accomplished by one of the methods discussed in Chapter III,


88
If the observation is made by using a solar s c reene without the aid

of any sighting device 3 the center-tangent method should be used in

preference to the quadrant-tangent method.

The observing procedure given will assume the use of the

center-tangent method and a stop w a t c h , The telescope is pointed

somewhat in advance of the s u n ’s path. The observer holds the stop

watch in hand and watches the sun approach the vertical wire. The

moment the s u n ’s limb touches the wire the stop watch is started.

The stop watch is then compared with the survey chronometer and

stopped on an even 10 second chronometer reading. The chronometer

reading minus the stop watch reading is the time of observation. The

horizontal angle is read and recorded. The vertical angle is read

on the first and last observations of the series. The altitude is

used for the semidiameter correction and can be computed from the

s u n ’s hour a n g l e , but in most cases it is easier to observe. The

instrument is again pointed at the fixed reference point and the

horizontal reading checked to see if it agrees with the initial

reading of 0o- 0 0 ’-00,,« This would complete a single observation

on the sun by the hour angle method.


CHAPTER VIII

OTHER METHODS OF DETERMINING

AZIMUTH BY THE SUN

Azimuth by the Altitude and

Hour Angle of the Sun

The simplest method of computing the azimuth of the sun is by

use o f Eq« (4)« This equation


e
D „ COS Dec. x sin t fat
@ o e o e o e s o e e o e o o o e e e e o o e o e o o o e o o © \^ /
cos h

involves only three quantities 5 the declination$ hour a n g l e » and

altitude of the sun. The latitude of the observing station is

not required.

The met h o d $ though simple in appearances has little practical

value. The two hardest quantities to measure in the field, altitude

and time are required. Since an error in the measurement of either of

these quantities will affect the computed azimuth the accuracy of

this method is rather limited. Computation of the sun's hour angle

requires an accurate measurement of longitude. Since it is highly

unlikely that the longitude of the observing station would.be known

and not the latitude the one advantage of using Eq. (4) is lost.

Inspection of the dB/dh curves in Plate 4 and the dB/dt

curves in Plate 8 for a given hour angle and declination will give the

89
90

accuracy that can be expected from any observation,.

If the time of observation is not known within a few seconds

the use of Eq. (4) will give absurd results. Any equation involving

the s u n ’s hour angle requires knowing time within five seconds to

keep the resulting error in the computed azimuth under one minute.

When the time of observation is not accurately known the

altitude method should be used. If accurate time is known the hour

angle method of determining the s u n ’s azimuth will give the best

results.

Equal Altitude Method

The determination of azimuth by equal altitudes of the sun

is very similar to the Indian Circle method discussed in Chapter L-

Both methods are based on the theory that the s u n ’s center at equal

altitudes occupies symmetrical positions in azimuth east and west of

the meridian in the morning and in the afternoon. If the declination

of the sun is considered constant 0 its path is symmetrical with respect

to the meridian. In this case the meridian would be midway between

any two positions of the sun which are at equal distance above the

horizon. Unlike the Indian Circle method@ azimuth determined by the

Equal Altitude method is corrected for the error introduced by the

change in the s u n ’s declination in the interval between the A.M. and

P 0 M, observations.

The field procedure used in the Equal Altitude method is


91

quite simple. With the transit thoroughly leveled a horizontal angle

is turned from a fixed reference point to the s u n ’s center. The

horizontal and vertical angle and the time of observation are read and

recorded. At intervals of four or five minutes the above operation is

repeated at least two more times. This constitutes the morning

observation.

In the afternoon the transit is again carefully leveled. With

the scope in the same position the largest vertical angle observed

in the morning is set off and the sun is tracked until this position

is reached by the center of the sun. The horizontal angle and the

time are then recorded and the next vertical angle is set off and the

procedure repeated.

If the transit has been carefully leveled then any other error

introduced by poor instrument adjustment need not be considered since

the vertical angles are identical in both the A.M. and P.M. obser­

vations . The same is true of both refraction and parallax and no

correction is necessary.

The correction ( C ) , expressed in minutes of angular m easure,

due to the change in declination is

n -
V
1/2 A Dec,
6 0 0 6 0 6 0 0 9 0 6 0 0 O Q O O O e O O O O O O e e e O O O O O O O
tt,i\
cos Phi. x sin t

In this equation A Dec, is the change in declination of the sun from

the A.M. to the P.M. observation expressed in minutes of angular

measure. The solution of Eq. (47) is simplified by substituting


92

l/2(Ti f Tg) for the hour angle (t), This gives

1 / 2 A Dec o
L " cos~ P h i <= x sin 1/2(T^ T2 ) •••••••••••••••••••••••■•

where (T jl + Tg) is the total watch time from the A.M. to the P.M.,

observationg expressed in angular measure.

The correction (C) is applied after the horizontal angle

between the s u n 8s position in the morning and afternoon is bisected.

The true south point is obtained by applying the correction to the

east with a northerly or positive hourly change in declination, or to

the west with a southerly or negative hourly change,

Table 22 of the Standard Field Tables aids in the solution of

Eq, ( 4 8 ) Using arguments of Phi. and 1/2(T^ t Tg) a coefficient can

be taken directly from the table. Applying this coefficient to

1/2 A D e c . gives the required correction ( C)=

This method is seldom used by the average surveyor due. to the

inconvenience of making observations both in the morning and afternoon

and the latter at a precise time. It is a convenient method of

establishing a true meridian at a base camp since it does not require

an accurate measurement of either time or latitude.

The most accurate results are obtained when the sun is moving

rapidly in altitude.

^•United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land


Management, Standard Field T a b les, 1956, page 210,
CHAPTER IX

COMPUTATIONS

Introduction^

The equations discussed in the preceding pages can be solved

in a number of ways* The most satisfactory method is one that will

give the desired accuracy with a minimum of time and effort* There

should be a continual regard for economy by keeping the computing

device consistent with the precision of the equipment used* A

10- inch slide rule should not be used to compute the azimuth of a

line when a directional theodolite was used to measure the angles 6

Computations should be made in an orderly and systematic

fashiono The use of a standard fpnn adds to the efficiency and makes

it easier for someone else to check the computationse

Slide Rule

The standard 10-inch rule can be read to three significant

figures and is not precise enough for most azimuth computations/ A

20-inch slide rule that was especially designed for the Bureau of

Land Management gives much better results* One side of the rule is

used for stadia reduction while the other side is laid out for

solving the azimuth equation*


94

Like all logarithmic scales the accuracy of reading is dependent on

the location of the number being read on the sca l e « Most of the

functions can be read within two minutes of arc. This slide rule is

not intended for use where an accurate azimuth determination is

needed. It does offer a rapid method of finding the approximate

bearing of a line.

Logarithms

The use of logarithms provide a convenient method of solving

the azimuth equations. Pocket sized tables such as those published by

Lefax afford an excellent method of computing azimuth in the field.

Since addition and subtraction are the only operations requ i r e d g the

computations can be made in a very orderly fashion. Plate 3 is an

excellent example of the simplicity of this method.

Five place logs will satisfy most azimuth determinations by

the altitude method. When the value of the vertical angle is known only

to the nearest minute there is little justification in using more than

five places. Seven place tables are readily available for more

accurate w o r k .where the azimuth is to be determined within a few

seconds of arc.

•hfon V e g a „ op.cit.
Natural Functions

The natural trigometrie functions are probably the most

commonly used method of solving the azimuth equations. Used in

conjunction with a desk calculator they offer a fast and accurate

means of solving any of the solar computations. Division and

multiplication can be done very rapidly on a modern electric calcu­

lator and answers obtained to ten or twelve significant figures,

A number of tables are available that can be used to find

the natural trigometrie functions. One of the most convenient to

use is Peter's eight place tables for each second of.arc,^

A small compact calculator for field work has recently been

developed by the Curta Company, These pocket-sized calculators

can be used to multiply and divide numbers with up to ten significant

figures,.

Electronic Digital Computer

The use of a modern electronic digital computer is the fastest

method of handling a large number of azimuth computations. Once the

program is set up any of the equations used in determining azimuth

can be solved in seconds.

Many surveyors have only an occasional need for solar obser-

•^Professor Dr, J, P e t e r s $ Eight Place Table of Trigonometric


Functions 9 Edward Brothers , Inc, 8 Ann Az^or% 'Michigan, 1943,
vat ions and the time required for the computations is -relatively

unimportant. Larger engineering firms, and some of our government

agencies, that are involved in mapping, take many solar observations

and the problem of computing azimuth becomes a significant factor.

Field work in our northern states and much of the mountainous area

throughout the country is restricted to the summer months. The end

of the field season finds some of our government agencies with a

b acklog of solar observations numbering in the hundreds. The use of

an electronic digital computer may well be justified.

The principle disadvantages of using a computer are the

rather lengthy initial time required to write a satisfactory program

and the high cost of machine rental time. There are several advantages

that may well offset the disadvantages. Once the. program has been

written there is no need for an engineer to make any of the computa­

tions. The required data can be entered directly from the field book

by anyone trained to punch I.B.M, cards. Once the correct data has

" been punched on the cards the possibility of error is very slight.

As was mentioned before this method is the fastest available to handle

a large number of computations. One other important advantage is that

each solar observation can be treated independently. This gives much

better results than using the average value of several observations.


Hour Angle Program

A program was written to solve the hour angle equation (35)

by means of an electronic digital computer<, The hour angle method was

selected to program because it is the most accurate method of deter­

mining azimuth by the sun. The program was written using the Fortran

language. Explanations of the program will be limited to the procedure

for entering the required data and reading the print out sheet. No

attempt will be made to explain the Fortran language as this can be

obtained from any Fortran manual.^

The program exactly as it appears on Fortran 80 column

statement cards is as follows.

^■Robert E, Smith and Dora E. Johnson $ Fortran Autotester


John Wiley and Sons 8 Inc, 9 New York e N.Y, g 1 9 6 2 7 " ~ ='“’="=’
***. MURPHY
* COMPILE FORTRAN 9 EXECUTE FORTRAN

C AZIMUTH BY HOUR ANGLE OF THE SUN


C JERRY MURHPY
DIMENSION D(4 ) ,DM(4) ,DS(4),H(3 ) ,HM(3 ) SRAD(4 ) ,RADT(3 ) ,HS(3)
PI = 3.1415926
1 READ 31, MON, ID,IYR
31 FORMAT (312)
GO TO (50,51,52,53,54,55,56,57,58,59,60,61),MON
50 PRINT 6 2 9ID,IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
51 PRINT 63, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
52 PRINT 64, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
53 PRINT 65, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
54 PRINT 6 6 , ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
55 PRINT 67, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
56 PRINT 6 8 , ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
57 PRINT 69, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
58 PRINT 70, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
59 PRINT 71, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
60 PRINT 72, ID, IYR
GO TO 2 0 0
61 PRINT 73, ID, IYR
62 FORMAT (///9H JANUARY , 12, 4H, 19,12)
63 FORMAT (/// 10H FEBRUARY , 12, 4H, 19,12)
64 FORMAT (///7H MARCH , 12, 4 H S 19, 12)
65 FORMAT (///7H APRIL , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
6 6 FORMAT (///5H MAY , 12, 4 H $ 19, 12)
67 FORMAT (/// 6 H JUNE , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
6 8 FORMAT (/// 6 H JULY , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
69 FORMAT (/// 8 H AUGUST , 12* 4H s 19., 12)
70 FORMAT (///11H SEPTEMBER , 12, 4 H , 19, 12)
71 FORMAT (///9H OCTOBER , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
72 FORMAT (///10H NOVEMBER , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
73 FORMAT (///10H DECEMBER , 12, 4H, 19, 12)
200 READ 2 0 5 ,D(1 ) ,DM(1 ) ,DS(1 ) ,D(2),DM(2 ) ,DS(2),D(3 ) ,DM(3),DS(3),D(4)
205 FORMAT (10F8.0)
300 READ 2 0 6 ,DM(4 ) ,DS(4 ) ,H(1 ) ,HM(1 ) ,HS(1),H(2 ) ,HM(2 ) ,HS(2),H(3 ) ,HM(3)
206 FORMAT (10F8.0)
400 READ 207, HS(3)
207 FORMAT (F8.0)
DOS 1=1,4
3 RAD(I) = 0.01745329*(D(I)+DM(I)/60.+DS(l‘)/3600.)
DO 4 1=1,3
4 RADT(I )=0,26179939*( H(I)+HM(I)/60.+HS(I)/3600.)
RAD(l) = LATITUDE IN RADIANS
o o o o o o o

RAD(2) = LONGITUDE IN RADIANS


RAD(3) = DECLINATION IN RADIANS
RAD(4) = CHANGE IN DECL, IN RADIANS
RADT(l) = EQU OF TIME IN RADIANS
RADT(2) = CHANGE IN EQU OF TIME IN RADIANS
RADT(3) = TIME ZONE IN RADIANS
5 READ 6 , DEG, PMIN, SEC, THR, THIN, TSEC, INV, NEXT
6 FORMAT (6F8.0, 211)
IF INSTR IS INVERTED PLACE 1 IN COL 49
non

IF NEXT CARD CONTAINS EPHEMERIS INFO PLACE 2 IN COL 50


IF NEXT CARD DOES NOT CONTAIN EPHEMERIS INFO PLACE 1 IN COL 50
RADI = 0.01745329*(DEG+PMIN/60.+SEC/3600.)
RADIT = 0.26179939*(THR+TMIN/60.+TSEC/3600,)

CD
CD
GMT = RADII + R A DIO)'
I = GMT~RAD(2) + RADT(1)+RADT(2)*GMT*3.8197186-PI
DEC = RAD(3)+ RAD(A)*GMT*3,8197186
COTZ = (SINF(RAD( 1 ))*COSF(T)-COSF(RAD(1)* SINF(DEC)/COSF(DEC))
1/SINF(T)
IF(ABSF(C0TZ)-1 o E- 7 ) 7 $7 98
8 TA - 1./C0TZ
Z = ATAMF(TA)
IF(RADIT-PI)9$1 0 S10
9 IF(Z)11,12,12
11 B = Z+RADI+PI
GO TO 13
12 B = Z+RADI
GO TO 13
10 IF(Z)1U,11,11
14 B = 2.*PI+Z+RADI
13 BDEG = 6*57,295779
IF (BDEG-360,) 301,301,302
302 BDEG = BDEG - 360,
301 IDEG = BDEG
A = IDEG
C = (BDEG-A)*60,
IMIN = C
A = IMIN
SEC = (C-A)*60,
IF(INV)15,16,15
16 PRINT 17, IDEG, IMIN, SEC
17 FORMAT (14,2H -,13,2H -,F5,1)
GO TO (5,1),NEXT
15 PRINT 18, IDEG, IMIN, SEC
18 FORMAT (14,2H -,13,2H -,F5.1, 9H INVERTED)
GO TO (5,1), NEXT
7 Z = PI/2,
IF(RADIT-PI) 19,20 ,20
19 IF(Z)21,22,22

100
21 B = Z+RADH-P1
GO TO 23
22 B = Z+RADI
GO TO 23
2 0 IF(Z)24$2 1 s21
24 B = 2.*PJ+Z+RADI
23 BDEG = B*57.295779
IF (BDEG-360») 201,201*202
202 BDEG = BDEG-360«
201 IDEG = BDEG
IDEG = BDEG
A = IDEG
C = (BDEG-A)*60.
IMIN - C
A = IMIN
SEC = (C-A)*60.
IF(INV)25,26,25
26 PRINT 27, IDEG, IMIN, SEC
27 FORMAT( 1 4 ,2H -,13,2H -,F5.1, 19H Z ASSUMED = 90 DEG )
GO TO (5,1), NEXT
25 PRINT 28, IDEG, IMIN, SEC
28 FORMAT(14,2H -,13,2H - , F5«1S 9H INVERTED, 19H Z ASSUMED = 90 DEG)
GO TO (5,1).NEXT
END

1 0 1
102 -

The statement cards are followed by a blank card and then

the data cards,

The first data card refers to statement (1) and contains

the monthd d a y 9 and year of the observations. This information is

entered in the first six columns of the statement card without the use

of decimal points. Two columns for the m o n t h 9 two for the day, and

two for the year, June 1 3 g 1963 would be entered as 061363,

The second data card contains the information asked for in

statement (200), This data is entered in fields of eight on the

statement card and requires the use of a decimal point. Use of a

fixed number of columns for entering the data permits use of a •

control card that greatly aids the key punch operator. The infor­

mation on this card is as f o llows:

Column No, Data

1 - 8 6 ,Latitude of s tation, degrees -

9 - 16 Latitude of st a t i o n e minutes

17 - 24 ,Latitude.of st a t i o n , seconds

25 - 32 « , Longitude of station * degrees

33 - 40 ........................ L ongitude of st a t i o n , minutes


.

41 - 48 ,,,,,,,,,,,,,Longitude of station, seconds

49 - 56 ,S u n 8s Declination, degrees

57 - 64 e S m V s Declination, minutes

65 - 72 S u n 8s Declination, seconds

73 - 80 Change in Dec, per h r , , degrees


The third data card refers to statement number (300)„

All data is entered in fields of eight and requires the use of a

decimal p o i n t c

Column Noo Data

1 - 8 ««oa,,*ee,ao,oe.*Change in Dec* per h r 0p minutes

9 ~ 16 Change in Dec® per h r 0 g seconds

17 « 24 ,@«e**o*.«,oa,soEquation of Time %hours


25 - 32 o b ««e•«e a« • . • • eEquation of T i m e 9minutes

33 - 40 a a «», «* 0 a aa a aaa 0 eEqUBtiOD Of TilUQ % SeCOndS

41 - 48 eChange in E q e of Time per hro 9 hours

49 - 56 6 6 « 3 8a e e»e o6e e oChange in Eq<, of Time per h r 0 9 minutes


57 « 64 o o o « 0 e«o 6 »e 6€ 6 eChange in E q & of Time per h r 0 9seconds
65 - 72 * * e *«„,@ cTime Z o n e 9hours
73 - 80 *e*Time Z o n e 9 minutes

The fourth data card contains only the time zone in seconds

as called for in statement number (400) 6 This is placed in the

first eight columns and requires a decimal p o i n t e

The information on the first four cards will be the same

for all observations taken on the same day and at the same station«

The date and time zone will be k n o w n 0 The latitude and longitude

of the observing station would be scaled from a map * The remaining

information on the first four cards is taken from the ephemeris for

the date of the observation*


104

Data card number five contains the information from an

individual observation. The horizontal angle and time of obser™

vation are entered in fields of eight and require the use of

decimal points. The horizontal angle recorded must be the clockwise

angle from the sun to the target. The time of observation is

measured in the standard time for the time belt of the observing

station, -

Column No. Data

1 « 8 ,.Horizontal Angle$ degrees .

9 ■= 16 * ..... ..Horizontal Angle 9 minutes

17 - 24 .Horizontal A n g l e e seconds

25 - 32 .Time of Observation, hours

33 - 40 ,Time of Observation» minutes

41 - 48 .Time of Observation, seconds

49 .6.86 66066.666 © 6.8.,'..Te IS S C Op6 P OS 3.f 1 OU

50 ..o,.,.,o,,,, 8 ...,...oControl Statement

Column (49) is left blank if the telescope was direct

and contains a (1) if the instrument was inverted. Column

number (50) is a program control. If column (50) contains a (1)

then another observation will follow. If column (50) contains a.

(2 ) the program will return to read statement ( 1 ) and read a new

set of ephemeris data. A decimal point is hot used in either column

(49) or (50),
105

A separate data card is used for each individual observation<,

The total number of data cards is four plus the number of observations.

If four observations were made at the same station then data cards

( 5 ) e (6 ) g ( 7 ) g and ( 8 ) would contain the horizontal angle and

standard time of each observation. Column number (49) would indicate

the position of the telescope, whether direct or inverted, for each

observation. On data cards number (5), (6 ), and (7) column number

(50) would contain a ( 1 ), On data card number ( 8 ) column number

(50) would contain a (2) if another series of observations were

to follow taken either from a different station or on another date.

The print out sheet will contain the date of the observation.

Following the date will be the computed azimuth for each observation.

The computed azimuth will be the clockwise angle reckoned from the

north. If the instrument was inverted the azimuth will be followed

by the word "Inverted".


CHAPTER X

CONCLUSION

The need for accurate determination of direction is not a

thing of the past. The rapid growth of our country and increased

value of land have added to the problems of the property surveyor.

Retracing old property lines and establishing new ones frequently

require celestial observations. The survey of the public lands is

far from complete. The addition of Alaska to the United States

adds a considerable area to be subdivided by the Bureau of Land

Management.

The work of the Geological Survey continues over most of

the country. Ground controls for both mapping and aerial photo­

graphs require high quality meridian determinations,

The guidance systems used in missiles and the controlling

devices in our tracking stations are dependent on good direction

control. 11 The inertial guidance system used in missiles and

submarines is capable of maintaining a direction within a few

s e c o n d s , but it must be r e c koned 9 calibrated, and checked against

reliable meridians".^

^Eldridge, o p . cit., page 123.

106
107

The interstate highway system and the vast network of pipe­

lines and powerlines that cross this country depend on quality

direction control*

Solar observations are frequently the most practical and

economical method of establishing the "true" meridian 6 The principal

advantage of using the sun in determining azimuth is that observation

can be made in the daytime and usually during regular working hours*

The size and brightness of the sun make pointing difficult and are

the major drawbacks in solar observations *

There are several methods of pointing a telescope at the sun*

The least accurate methods employ a screen and sightings are made

on a reflected image* Best results are obtained by a direct

sighting on the sun* Use of a solar filter* either alone or in

combination with a solar reticle * provides an accurate means of

pointing directly on the sun* The most recent and;.re fined method of

pointing is by use of the Roelofs 8 solar prism*

High accuracy meridian, determinations require that each

observation be used independently to compute azimuth* Use of the

average values of several observations made on the s u n ?s limbs are

subject to two systematic errors due to curvature and seraidiamefer«

The s u n ?s declination is given in the ephemeris and the

tabulated value can be corrected to any desired accuracy*

Latitude and longitude are normally scaled from a map for

solar observation made in the United States* Values within a few


10 8

seconds of arc can be obtained quite ea s i l y 6

Several methods can be used to determine azimuth by the sun*

Only two of these* the altitude and hour angle methods* are of

practical value to the average surveyor*

The altitude method* as the name implies* requires an

accurate measurement of the sun*s altitude 0 A number of factors af­

fect the measurement of this quantity* The precision of the transit

and atmospheric refraction are probably the most significant* The

dB/dh ratio is the most important criterion as to the accuracy of

the altitude method*

The hour angle method requires an accurate measurement of

the local hour angle of the sun* Three factors affect the hour

angle; the time of observation * longitude of the observing station*

and the equation of time* In well mapped areas it is only the time

of observation that is difficult to determine* The dB/dt ratio is

the most important consideration when determining azimuth by the

hour angle method*

The first and most significant consideration in choosing

between the altitude and hour angle method is the precision of the

survey timepiece* When accurate time control is available the hour

angle method should be used*

Quality azimuth determinations can be made by use of the

sun* Consistent and accurate results-demand a thorough knowledge

of the principles involved*


BIBLIOGRAPHY

Books

Breed^vQharles B . g Su r v e y i n g a John Wiley and S o n s „ Inc. „


New York 9 1942.

Breedj Charles B . $ and H o s m e r „ George L . e The Principles A n d .


Practice of Surveying* Volume I - Elementary Surveying

B r o w n , Curtis M , „ and E l d r i d ge 6 Winfield H . e Evidence And Procedures


for Boundary Location 9 John Wiley and S o n s , I n c . a New,York 9
. :1962.

Davis* Raymond E. „ and Foote * Francis S . , Surveyings. Theory And


y Practice 9 McGraw-Hill Book Company* I n c . „ New York * 4th e d 0*
: 1953.
, .

Gurley* W. and L. E . * The Gurley Telescopic Solar Transits Its Use


and Adjuatment"*'¥ uiiWtln ^o'r, ii^»T*' Troy a New York * 195^.

Hart y William L . * College Trigonometry * D. C. Heath and Company*


Boston* 1951.

H i e k e r s o n * T. F . * Latitude* Longitude* and Azimuth by The Sun or


. Stars * published by the Author * Chapel Hill *' N .dV * 19477

Kiely* Edmond R , * Surveying Instruments; Their History and


■- Classroom Use * Bureau ofL Piibiications * Teachers College *
ColuSbia tiniversity» New York* 1947.

Linsley* Ray K . * Kohler* Max A . * and P a u l h u s * Joseph L. H . *


■ Hydrology For Engineers * McGraw-Hill Book Company * I n c . *
Ngw York*' '1'96 '8 .""" ' ' .

Nasati* Jason John * A Textbook of Practical Astronomy* McGraw-Hill


Book Company * New York * 1932.

Peters * Dr. J. * Eight Place Tables of Trigonometric Functions *'Edward


B r o t h e r s % I n c % * Ann Arbor* Michigan* 1943.

109
110

Roelofs9 R , 9 Astronomy Applied to Land Surveying* N. V c WecL J» Ahrend


and Zoc^t A w t e M a A M o l l a h d ' , ' ' "&50."

Smith 9 Robert E«, „ and Johnson 9


Dora E., Fortran Autotester6 John Wiley
and S o n s , Inc.@ Hew York $ 1962. ~.... .

U. S. Bureau of Land Management9 Manual of Instructions For The


Survey of The Public Lands of The United States 1 9 4 7 „
G o W r a m ^ T ^ i ^ t i n g O ^ i c e j, Washington 25 9 D. C.

U. S. Bureau of Land Managements Standard Field T a b l e s , Government


Printing Office „ W a s h i n g t w ™ 2 E T ^ ° 7 r T "

U. S. Bureau of Land Management, Sun. Polaris, and


Other Selected Stars a Government Printing Office 9
Washihgt'on^l^r^^ C.

U. S. Coast and Geodetic S u r v e y » Special Publication Ho. 14»


Government Printing OfficeV Washihgton 25, B. C. .

U. S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Special Publication Ho. 2 4 7 ,


Government Printing O f f i c e ^ ^ a s H T n g t m ^ T ^ B T ’^ c T ^ -” "

U. S. Geologic Survey, Topographic Instruction, Solar Observations


.por Transit T r a v e r s ^ Government Printing' Off^ice,
Washington 1953. •

-U. S. W a v y $ Tables of Computed Altitude and A zimuth, Hydrographic


Office Publication N o . 2'l4'^ ^overn'm%t'' Printing Office „
Washington 25, D, C.

Vega, Baron Von, Seven Place Logarithmic Tables. D, Van Hostrand


Company, I n c . , P r i ncetons Hew Jersey.

Journals 9 Proceedings 8 and Transactions

Berry s Ralph M o o r ® „ "Azimuth by Solar-Altitude Observations How


Good Is I t ? " , Surveying And M apping, Volume X V I I I s No. 3 S
July-Sept«~ 1 9 5 8 s American Congress On Surveying And
Mapping, W a shington6 D. C.

E l d r i d g e 9 Winfield H . , "Purpose and Procedures for Meridian


' Determinations"s Proceedings, Illinois Land Surveyors
Oonf. * RLSA* V o l . T i l , 'Urban, 111. 9 1962.
E l d r i d g e s Winfield Ho a "Discussion of Solar-Altitude Azimuth"e
Proceedings of Surveying and Mapping Division, No. 3410,

H a r t m a n 8 Paul, "Solar-Altitude Azimuth", Journal of the Surveying


and Mapping Division, No. SU1, AScis, Feb. , 1963.

B i c k e r s o n , T. F . ,"Determination of Position and Azimuth by Simple


and Accurate Methods", Transactions of ASCE, Vol. 114, 1949,

Inch, Philip L . , "Simplified Method of Determining True B e a r i n g " ,


Transaction of A S C E , Vol. 102, 1937.

Kriegh, James D . , "Solar Observations For Determining The Bearing


of A Line, How Good Are T h e y ? " , Proceedings of The Sixth
Arizona Land Surveyors* Converence, Ehglheerlng Experiment