mass noun
  • 1The process or activity of accurately ascertaining one's position and planning and following a route.

    ‘Columbus corrected his westward course by celestial navigation’
    • ‘There are plenty of hands-on activities, covering all aspects of seamanship, including navigation, weather forecasting and ship-handling.’
    • ‘Inside is a guidance control unit with inertial navigation and global positioning systems.’
    • ‘The ship will be fitted with air/surface search and navigation radars.’
    • ‘Environmental and weather conditions must be right, and flight planning and navigation must be precise.’
    • ‘It is equipped with a global positioning system navigation system.’
    • ‘The aircraft has state-of-the-art flight deck, avionics and navigation equipment.’
    • ‘Reliable in-car navigation only becomes possible with high position accuracy combined with an up-to-date map database.’
    • ‘He made systematic astronomical observations on his voyage which provided important navigation charts to later explorers.’
    • ‘However, the mountain range was not on the navigation charts used by the US Navy.’
    • ‘Its flight control, navigation and vehicle management are independent and based on a mission plan.’
    • ‘The launcher unit is equipped with an onboard land navigation system.’
    • ‘While on the route, the aircraft practice visual low-level navigation, simulated threat reactions and simulated target attacks.’
    • ‘Phoenix will be used as a demonstrator for the autonomous navigation and flight-control system used for the final approach and landing of the unmanned vehicle.’
    • ‘The pair, who were good friends, shared an interest in air navigation.’
    • ‘The locations of the mines were then confirmed using underwater navigation and communications technology.’
    • ‘The system also provides flight control and navigation data intended for mission specific systems and equipment.’
    • ‘Now, Global Positioning Systems and satellite navigation are more accurate and widely available.’
    • ‘The war bred clever innovation in radar systems, navigation aids and bomb sites.’
    • ‘For the first millennium of mankind's navigation of the seas, we only skimmed the surface.’
    • ‘In addition, atom lasers may yield extremely precise gyroscope navigation for air and space travel.’
    • ‘There were quite a few parallel paths, which made navigation more difficult.’
    • ‘Now, here as elsewhere, they carry machetes, automatic weapons and navigation equipment.’
    • ‘Precise land navigation in any weather by day or night will be as commonplace as the exact time.’
    helmsmanship, steersmanship, seamanship, map-reading, chart-reading, wayfinding
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  • 2The passage of ships.

    ‘transporter bridges to span rivers without hindering navigation’
    • ‘These were sold to the United States in 1904, but it was not until 1914 that the Panama Canal was opened for navigation.’
    • ‘This maneuver opened the river to navigation farther upstream and stopped the overflow of water into the lake.’
    • ‘Rivers were open to ship navigation at that time.’
    • ‘Inland navigation also plays an important role in the transport of dangerous goods including petroleum products and liquefied gas.’
    • ‘Humber Pilots Ltd, the organisation that handled river navigation until a row over terms led to strike action and the end of their contract, said the incident could have had horrendous repercussions.’
    • ‘As we have seen, however, the practical exercise of a right to arrest ships in passage poses serious dangers to navigation, and it is rarely used as a means of enforcing anti-pollution regulations.’
    • ‘"Inland navigation keeps traffic off our highways and affects commerce, " he says.’
    • ‘The emphasis is on railway transport, river navigation receiving less attention.’
    • ‘The freeze could hurt the ability of Russia's largest shipping firm, to export oil once rivers reopen for navigation in the spring, the company warned.’
    • ‘The first four conditions were designed to avoid conflict between competing landowners and to keep at least part of the river open to navigation and upstream fishermen.’
    • ‘Last year 800,000 people visited and basic navigation is still essential to trade, tourism and sport.’
    • ‘Inland water navigation offers considerable economic and ecological advantages over other forms of transport in many areas and industries.’
    • ‘These structures enable the Corps to control the rivers for navigation and flood prevention.’
    • ‘On Wednesday, the ministers signed two agreements - on sea navigation and air transport.’
    • ‘Sometimes a third party such a harbour pilot is at fault, or a navigation authority.’
    • ‘He intended to do this prior to the seasonal cessation of river navigation due to winter and the expedition's retirement to a wintering ground.’
    • ‘Keelboat and steamboat navigation was always treacherous, and with the arrival of railroads, river transportation became unimportant.’
    • ‘In that case a vessel sank through the negligence of her owners in the River Dee obstructing navigation.’
    • ‘Secondly it enables the authority to raise much-needed revenue towards the cost of maintaining the river for public navigation.’
    • ‘It did prove that the river was suitable for navigation and Randell sold his cargo of flour and Cadell brought 4,000 bales of wool back on his return journey.’
    1. 2.1dialect count noun A navigable inland waterway, especially a canal.
      ‘most of the navigation from Wormley to Tottenham was frozen’
      • ‘The navigation joins the river at Athy, a picturesque town with old warehouses lining the harbour.’
      • ‘Efforts to improve the river began centuries before the river Lea navigation was completed.’
      • ‘Upper Lough Erne is connected by canal to the Shannon navigation system, the largest navigable inland waterway in Europe.’
      • ‘He will then embark on a walking history of the town, providing a talk on The Grand Canal and Barrow navigation.’
  • 3Computing
    The action of moving around a website, the Internet, etc.

    • ‘Site Finder is a powerful tool that improves Web navigation for users.’
    • ‘A built-in joystick is intended to support gaming and simplify web site navigation.’
    • ‘Some users will also need help with Web site navigation skills, including how to find the site online.’
    • ‘The software also provides navigation tools to move the image in all directions.’
    • ‘Your printed page will still show all those unwanted navigation menus and banner ads.’
    • ‘Do you want your navigation buttons to change when the mouse rolls over them?’
    • ‘Overview mode is a great feature allowing easy navigation of your production.’
    • ‘Another criticized the site because the navigation bar appeared only on the home page.’
    • ‘Give your site a face-lift to improve navigation, usability and accessibility.’
    • ‘Like most webloggers, I do include main navigation on every page.’
    • ‘Have consistent, intuitive navigation in the same place on every page throughout your site.’
    • ‘The current page should be clearly singled out from the other navigation menu options.’
    • ‘What about that navigation menu that appears on every single page of your website?’
    • ‘Locate the information you need more quickly and easily using the new intuitive tab navigation on each Web page.’


Early 16th century (denoting travel on water): from French, or from Latin navigatio(n-), from the verb navigare (see navigate).