Monday, August 19, 2013

Maps on Monday

What's the longest straight line you can sail on earth?

Apparently it's almost 20,000 miles from Pakistan to the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia, via the Indian, South Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.





I know it doesn't look like a straight line on the Mercator projection, but check out the video.





I wonder how long it will be before someone actually tries to sail it?

Source: kepleronlyknows on reddit


11 comments:

MYCSunfish Fleet said...

Technically, the YouTube video is showing a segment of a circle, not a straight line, because of the curvature of the Earth.

Therefore I think the longest that you can sail in a "straight" line is the distance that an AC72 sails while it's getting up on its foils.

Tillerman said...

Oh dear. There's always one in every class, isn't there?

kiwiyates said...

2 actually..
Unless you got really lucky with a long downwind run, sailing this would require tacking or gybing along the course plotted by the straight "segment of a circle" - so therefore you could not sail straight but a lot of little zig zags. Hmmm.. if its 20,000 miles and you complete a tack or gybe every 1 mile, how many tacks/gybes would that be and what would be the total distance sailed??? Math on Monday - uughh!

Tillerman said...

I was afraid this would happen. Why does this blog attract so many anal-retentive readers?

John said...

The real issue is probably the pirates off the horn of Africa. I think a few have already tried and only made it the first six or seven hundred miles.

BTW, if it were to windward the whole way and your boat tacks thru 90 degrees the distance would be 20,000/sin(45), or 28284 miles. Now, if there were 10 deg oscillations in the seabreeze and you always sailed on the lifted tack...

kiwiyates said...

In the words of the "Boomtown Rats" - "I don't like Mondays..."
http://youtu.be/SaHAvEEbQOE

Joe Rousé said...

I hate to be one of those anal-retentive types, but (tacking and gybing be damned).....since the Earth is curved, you would not be able to sail in a straight line. I'm just saying.

Tillerman said...

Oh dear (again.)

Am I really going to have to write a post about spherical geometry?

Don't make me do this.

Baydog said...

Don't do it

Baydog said...

Cause I won't get it

Pandabonium said...

For the anal-retentive types it should a post about sphincter geometry.

This is the proposed route for Russo-Pakistan gas pipeline.

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