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

    • ‘Precise land navigation in any weather by day or night will be as commonplace as the exact time.’
    • ‘Environmental and weather conditions must be right, and flight planning and navigation must be precise.’
    • ‘There are plenty of hands-on activities, covering all aspects of seamanship, including navigation, weather forecasting and ship-handling.’
    • ‘It is equipped with a global positioning system navigation system.’
    • ‘The war bred clever innovation in radar systems, navigation aids and bomb sites.’
    • ‘The locations of the mines were then confirmed using underwater navigation and communications technology.’
    • ‘The pair, who were good friends, shared an interest in air navigation.’
    • ‘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 aircraft has state-of-the-art flight deck, avionics and navigation equipment.’
    • ‘In addition, atom lasers may yield extremely precise gyroscope navigation for air and space travel.’
    • ‘Now, here as elsewhere, they carry machetes, automatic weapons and navigation equipment.’
    • ‘While on the route, the aircraft practice visual low-level navigation, simulated threat reactions and simulated target attacks.’
    • ‘There were quite a few parallel paths, which made navigation more difficult.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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 launcher unit is equipped with an onboard land navigation system.’
    • ‘Reliable in-car navigation only becomes possible with high position accuracy combined with an up-to-date map database.’
    • ‘Its flight control, navigation and vehicle management are independent and based on a mission plan.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘For the first millennium of mankind's navigation of the seas, we only skimmed the surface.’
    helmsmanship, steersmanship, seamanship, map-reading, chart-reading
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  • 2The passage of ships.

    ‘bridges to span rivers without hindering navigation’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Secondly it enables the authority to raise much-needed revenue towards the cost of maintaining the river for public navigation.’
    • ‘Last year 800,000 people visited and basic navigation is still essential to trade, tourism and sport.’
    • ‘"Inland navigation keeps traffic off our highways and affects commerce, " he says.’
    • ‘Inland water navigation offers considerable economic and ecological advantages over other forms of transport in many areas and industries.’
    • ‘This maneuver opened the river to navigation farther upstream and stopped the overflow of water into the lake.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘In that case a vessel sank through the negligence of her owners in the River Dee obstructing navigation.’
    • ‘These were sold to the United States in 1904, but it was not until 1914 that the Panama Canal was opened for navigation.’
    • ‘Keelboat and steamboat navigation was always treacherous, and with the arrival of railroads, river transportation became unimportant.’
    • ‘Inland navigation also plays an important role in the transport of dangerous goods including petroleum products and liquefied gas.’
    • ‘The emphasis is on railway transport, river navigation receiving less attention.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Sometimes a third party such a harbour pilot is at fault, or a navigation authority.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Rivers were open to ship navigation at that time.’


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