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Azimuth Calculation

  1. Mar 9, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    Ok, I'm doing a survey course, and I need to calculate the azimuth of an angle. The 'textbook' is a series of not-all-that-well-written notes, so I'm hoping you can help (it tells me that to calculate azimuth I need to reduce to absolute coords, but in order to do so I need the azimuth!:grumpy: ).

    I'm not going to post my variables because I don't want you to give me the answer, only to help me figure out the formula I need. I know this is basic trig, but it's been decades since I've studied any trig or physics. I know what an azimuth is, just not how to calculate it from my data.

    I know one angle, and the distance between my station point (A) and the point I'm measuring (B). I know the angle is zero because I set the instrument to zero along it.

    http://www.tfw2005.com/boards/members/starfire_mk2-42816-albums-misc-retribution-files-picture1583-01.jpg [Broken]

    I know point B is in the 4th quadrant, with -dX and +dY values. Intuitively, this means my AZ will be ~ the 300* range. Problem is, while I understand both the rectangular and polar coord systems (I suspect this is a polar coord system I'm working in, since I have a -dX angle), I don't know how to calculate dX and dY.

    2. Relevant equations

    Polar angle theta =tan minus 1 (dX/dY) +addition constant

    If this is the right formula, how do I calculate dX and dY??

    3. The attempt at a solution
    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 9, 2009 #2


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