Practical Navigation Nutshell Series Book 1 Preface to the fifth edition
The overwhelming response, in India and abroad, to the ‘Nutshell Series’ of books written by me, especially this first one – ‘Practical Navigation’ – has encouraged me to keep thinking of ways by which improvements could be made with each new edition.
In this edition, there are several improvements:
- Increase in content to cover the entire theory and practicals needed for all levels of officers.
- Inclusion of colour drawings to not only make them attractive but also to better illustrate their contents.
- Removal of the Haversine formula which has become extinct nowadays, as scientific calculators are used by most people afloat and ashore.
- Change from the earlier ‘Amplitude’ of the sun and moon to the ‘Rising/setting azimuth’ which is easier and has been used in ‘Norie’s Nautical Tables’.
- Explanations in astronomy using the ‘Helio-centric’, ‘Geo-centric’ and ‘Observer-centric’ concepts.
- The use of A, B, C Tables and the Intercept formula to calculate initial and final courses and the distance on a great circle track.
- The use of the second person approach – ‘you’ – instead of the dull third person such as ‘It can be seen from diagram that …’.
- Increase in the page size from A5 to A4 so that the book does not become too thick.
1st April 2014 | By: (Capt. H. Subramaniam)
Marine Meteorology – Nutshell Series Book 2 – Preface to the third edition
Meteorology can be a very interesting subject if tackled properly. The secret is the order in which the topics are studied. Everything would then seem to fall into a proper pattern whereby nothing needs to be conned by rote (learned by heart).
Meteorology is a vast subject and there are many books on it. However, this book is meant to give the mariner the necessary knowledge in a simple and concise manner (in a nutshell!), enable him to become competent with less effort.
The sketches and maps have been personally drawn by me and simplified to make the subject easier to understand.
In this edition, the third, minor changes have been made throughout especially in the weather reporting system, the various weather codes, meteorological instruments, the International Ice Patrol and weather routeing with cross-references, wherever necessary, to the 2000 amendments to SOLAS 74.
13th September 2002 | By: Capt.H.Subramaniam.
Shipborne Radar – Nutshell Series Book 3 – Preface to the fourth edition
Every author who writes a technical book does so with a certain purpose in mind, to suit a specific need. This book is intended not only to make an officer competent in the use of radar, but also to serve as a reference book that he would like to carry with him at sea.
I have tried to give radar plotting the importance it deserves by devoting nearly half the book to it. Work sheets, showing the working of each exercise, have been included so that quick revision is possible whenever desired.
In the second edition, minor changes were made in parts I, II & III to keep uptodate especially in view of IMO’s Performance Standards for Navigational Radar for sets fitted after September 1984. No changes have been made in Part IV – radar plotting.
In the third edition, two new chapters were added in Part I – ‘Developments in basic radar’ and ‘The raster scan display’. A new part – Part V ‘ARPA’ – was added. This was intentionally included at the end after radar plotting so that the student may study radar first without too much information coming to him prematurely.
In this fourth edition, changes have been made incorporating the standards specified in IMO Resolution MSC.192(79) (adopted on 6th Dec 2004). Descriptions of CRT & electro-mechanical parts have been deleted as they are not found on modern ships.
My grateful thanks to seafarers for the encouraging remarks that they have made after studying/reading my books in the Nutshell Series.
13th September 2010 | By: Capt H. SUBRAMANIAM.
Ship Stability at the Operational Level – Nutshell Series Book 4
Preface to this renamed second edition
In this book, formerly called “Ship Stability I”, ten chapters have been added, by transferring them down from “Ship Stability II”, to adequately cover the syllabuses for:-
1) Officer in Charge of a Navigation Watch (formerly called Second Mate Foreign Going);
2) The FY & SY BSc (Nautical Sciences) degree courses of the University of Mumbai;
3) The FY & SY BSc (Nautical Sciences) degree courses of the Indian Maritime University;
4) The three-year BSc (Nautical Technology) degree course of the University of Mumbai;
5) The one-year Diploma in Nautical Science (DNS) course of the Indian Maritime University.
This inclusion of ten more chapters here was needed because some topics like Cross Curves of Stability, Trim, etc are now part of the DNS course. Simpsons Rules are in the Mathematics syllabus of the first semester of DNS Course. Hence that chapter also has been brought down to this book. However, only a small part of this chapter is needed for the DNS course. The rest is for the Chief Mate Course.
I was pleasantly surprised when many Marine Engineers said that they found the Stability books in the Nutshell Series very useful.
13th Sep 2011 | By: (Capt. H. Subramaniam)
Bridge Equipment, Charts & Publications – Nutshell Series Book 5
Preface to the first edition
This book was planned many years ago but delayed because priorities changed frequently when the writing/revision of books on other subjects was deemed more important. In the interim period, three booklets were published namely, “The Marine Sextant”, “The Marine Chronometer” and “The Magnetic Compass”. These booklets proved to be very popular. They would be discontinues when this book is published.
Recently, I took up teaching at pre-academies as a visiting faculty member and found that this new book was of utmost importance to those students – hence the completion of this book that I commenced writing many years ago.
I have made the chapter on the sextant more crisp with detailed diagrams on checking its errors. I have reduced the chapter on the chronometer considerably bearing in mind that most of the modern ships do not carry a chronometer as they use the GPS clock for correct time! I have added several chapters on other equipment, Charts, Chart Correction, & Publications.
Teaching at pre-sea academies gives me more satisfaction than lecturing at post sea colleges as the young cadets look up to you as a role model, an icon or even a hero. They tend to think “One day I hope to be like him,” barring the current waistline!
21st August 2012. | By: (Capt. H. Subramaniam)
Ship Stability at the Management Level – Nutshell Series Book 6
Preface to the Third Edition
Ship Stability for mariners was formerly covered in three parts in ascending order – Navigational Watchkeeper, Chief Mate & Master.
The STCW Convention has only two categories of officers – Operational Level & Management Level. Hence the three volumes of Stability have been combined into two:
- ‘Ship Stability I’ second edition – has been renamed ‘Ship Stability at the Operational Level. This has its original contents to which most of the contents of the erstwhile ‘Ship Stability II’ have been added at the end.
- ‘Ship Stability III’ third edition – now renamed ‘Ship Stability at the Management Level’. This has the original contents of Stability III to which the chapters carried over from Stability II have been added in the beginning. Eight new chapters have been added at the end, including Parametric Rolling, Squat, Under Keel Clearance, & Draft Survey. These topics are important while complying with their ship owner’s or ship operator’s ISM manuals.
As far as possible, a practical approach has been maintained to enable ship’s officers to put the knowledge to practical use on board ship.
Many Marine Engineers have thanked me saying that they found these stability books in the Nutshell Series very useful to them.
1st January 2011
Capt. H. Subramaniam
Nautical Watch-keeping – Nutshell Series Book 7
Preface to the Second Edition
Among all the books written by me so far, this one has been the most thought provoking. Much of the matter here is based on experiences and observations by myself and the officers who have been my students in this subject during the last twenty years.
Seamanship is a subject where changes occur frequently – different types of ships, differing nationalities, varying types of equipment, new legislation, increasing automation, clubbing of duties of personnel, reduction in manning scale, changes in traditional practices that were once considered sacrosanct, etc
In order to ensure that the material in this book is in line with current practices at sea, I did a four month voyage in command of a foreign-going bulk carrier just before publication of this book. After the Second and Third Officers had read the various chapters on anchor work, they had no problem going forward in charge of anchor stations. I can now confidently recommend that the Third Officer may be in charge of forward stations, on all ships, as suggested in this book.
In this second edition, watchkeeping on oil tankers at sea and in port have been included.
1st May 2001 | By: (Capt. H. Subramaniam)
Spherical Trigonometry – Nutshell Series Book 8
Preface to the first edition
I have often been asked how long it took me to write a book in the Nutshell Series. The reply `About eleven years’ usually evokes a look of disbelief.
I would like to clarify this statement. It takes about five years of teaching a subject to understand it well and another five to understand it thoroughly. A fairly large number of students in each class has the advantage that more doubts and questions are asked by the students. Different approaches to teaching the same subject can be tried out over a large variety of students and the effectiveness of each approach evaluated.
Thereafter, it takes about a year to write the book, late into the night, after working full time in the college.
Like the other books in the Nutshell Series, I have attempted to simplify the subject to make it easy and interesting. Spherical trigonometry is a `servicing subject’ i.e., one which enables a student to under-stand another subject. Spherical trigonometry is studied by mariners so that they can understand the practice and principles of navigation. I have carefully divided the subject into parts so that, after studying for about three quarters of an hour, the student is given an exercise to work to test the knowledge gained by him in that chapter.
1st July 1994 | By: (Capt. H. Subramaniam)
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