Pelorus is a nautical navigational instrument used for taking bearings and measuring angles between two objects, typically used for navigation and orientation at sea. It consists of a graduated circular disc with a sighting device mounted at its center, and is used to take bearings of celestial bodies or landmarks to determine the ship’s position.
Pelorus was invented by Captain Henry Kater in 1812, and was named after the HMS Pelorus, the first ship to be fitted with the instrument. It was initially used for taking bearings of celestial bodies such as the sun, moon, and stars, but later evolved to be used for taking bearings of other ships or landmarks on land.
Today, modern pelorus instruments may include features such as an electronic compass, GPS receiver, and digital displays for increased accuracy and ease of use. Pelorus instruments are commonly used on ships and boats for navigation and orientation, and are an important tool for maintaining safety at sea.
What is Pelorous?
It is alternative of azimuth mirror which enables the navigator to obtain off shore objects true and relative bearings by “graduated bearing plate” manually aligned with constant ship’s head, when line of sight of azimuth mirror on compass is obscured by obstructions such as funnel, deck erections etc.
Uses of Pelorous
Pelorus is primarily used for navigation and orientation at sea. It is a navigational instrument that helps a ship or boat determine its position by taking bearings of celestial bodies or landmarks. Some common uses of Pelorus are:
- Taking bearings of celestial bodies: One of the primary uses of Pelorus is for taking bearings of celestial bodies such as the sun, moon, and stars. These bearings can be used to determine the ship’s position on the surface of the Earth.
- Taking bearings of other ships or landmarks: Pelorus can also be used to take bearings of other ships or landmarks such as lighthouses or buoys. This helps a ship determine its relative position and avoid collisions.
- Aiding in navigation: Pelorus can be used to aid in navigation by providing a reference point for the ship’s heading. This can be particularly useful when navigating in poor visibility or when there are no visible landmarks.
- Assisting with search and rescue operations: Pelorus can also be used to assist with search and rescue operations by helping to locate a distressed vessel or person in the water.
- Training and education: Pelorus is also used in maritime training and education to teach navigation and orientation skills to aspiring sailors and navigators.
In summary, Pelorus is an important navigational instrument used on ships and boats to aid in navigation and orientation, and to help maintain safety at sea.