Definition of dead reckoning in US English:

dead reckoning


  • The process of calculating one's position, especially at sea, by estimating the direction and distance traveled rather than by using landmarks, astronomical observations, or electronic navigation methods.

    • ‘Due to this appalling weather the convoy had to rely on dead reckoning for navigation.’
    • ‘They had been in clouds since the beginning, navigating only by dead reckoning.’
    • ‘I decided to refigure all my dead reckoning and try to at least get some general idea of where I should be.’
    • ‘At first, crews had to rely on dead reckoning - estimating position by speed, flying time and compass.’
    • ‘Considering the weather conditions, dead reckoning or entering accurate data on the GPS was not a possibility.’
    • ‘There is no corresponding southern pole star, so dead reckoning became the primary navigating process.’
    • ‘In dead reckoning you estimate distance traveled along a given heading as a function of velocity and elapsed time.’
    • ‘Since medieval times, mariners have employed dead reckoning to navigate their vessels.’
    • ‘We fitted the trucks with air wheels - balloon tires, we would say now - and kept going, navigating like mariners, by sextant and compass and dead reckoning.’
    • ‘I had been going by dead reckoning, traveling up the incline, letting the slope of the incline guide me.’
    • ‘It was the Greeks who pioneered modern methods of navigating by calculation rather than by dead reckoning.’
    • ‘When human mariners and lunar astronauts navigated by dead reckoning they used charts, tables, various measuring instruments, and a considerable amount of mathematics.’
    • ‘Christopher Columbus used dead reckoning for his voyages across the Atlantic Ocean.’
    • ‘For centuries, the only way to navigate was to look at the position of the sun and stars and use dead reckoning.’
    • ‘Back in 1927, Lindbergh proved that a combination of dead reckoning and pilotage can work well, even over a 3,610-mile, 331 2-hour flight.’
    • ‘Even if you choose to find your way by dead reckoning, the rear-view mirror has a little LED display to tell you which point of the compass you are heading towards.’
    • ‘The pure navigational techniques of celestial and dead reckoning should have been superseded at this time by pilotage.’
    • ‘After I crossed the first two rivers my dead reckoning told me it was time to take the turn south, but the high mountain checkpoint was not in sight.’
    • ‘Steady course and speed or continuous monitoring of their changes is required for effective dead reckoning.’
    • ‘Sometimes he takes one route, and sometimes another, just as his fancy inclines him, he pays no attention to the compass, but sails by dead reckoning of his own devising.’


dead reckoning

/ˈded ˈrek(ə)niNG/