# Finding Bearing and Distance using Calculator?

• ScieneBoy
In summary: Calculate the geodetic azimuth and distance between two points (Forward)Enter lat/long. of two points, select distance units and Earth model and click "compute". Bold indicates the bearing. In summary, this calculator is based on "Vincenty's Formula" for elliptical Earth and is not based on the "Great circle formula" which is innacurate and assumes a "round" Earth. It is available in two programs, Inverse and Forward, to compute the geodetic azimuth and distance between two points. The Inverse program computes the bearing and distance between two points, given their geographic positions, while the Forward program computes the geographic position

#### ScieneBoy

∆Eastings + 262.575
∆Northings + 929.573

Bearing = not an idea how to work it out

Distance = Pol(∆Northing,∆Easting)= displays distance

Please help, thanks!

ScieneBoy said:
∆Eastings + 262.575
∆Northings + 929.573

Bearing = not an idea how to work it out

Distance = Pol(∆Northing,∆Easting)= displays distance

Please help, thanks!

I have no Idea how your calculator might work. Apparently the Pol() function converts an x and and y distance in polar coordinates. A second number should be produced that gives the bearing.

Have you heard of tan()?

Take a look at arctan or better atan2

I'm completely new to my professional practice course and we have been given a presentation to do from scratch so I'm learning from the very bottom despite it being University work, I have never done this before.

tan-1 (1662.275)/893.463 = 0.1001

How does this convert into a bearing, presuming this is the right method to use.

ok - don't worry surveying is all just junior school maths really.

Firstly get used to drawing some diagrams - and get some graph paper.
Then a couple of gotcha's:
Surveying uses Northing and Easting rather than X and y. Northing is up the page = Y and Easting is to the right = X.
Angles are measured clockwise from north.

So to get the bearing you just draw an N(up) and E(to the right) axis.
The point is at 262 units across and 929 units up.
Draw a line back to the origin.
You are looking for the angle this line makes with the north axis (ie up the page)

Remember
sin = opposite/hypotenuse
cos = adjacent/hypotenuse
tan = opposite/adjacent

You know the distance opposite the angle (it's the same as the distance along the East axis) and the distance adjacent to the angle (it's the distance up the North axis)

So tan(bearing) = easting / northing
or atan(easting / northing) = bearing

The length of the line you can get from the same trig or from pythagorus

Apart from having to deal with deg/min/sec that's about all there is to it - except for holding a survey pole steady and not dropping the theodolite.

Sadly I need to know deg/min/sec too, if that is something like 317° 40’ 44”

Simple enough
there are 60mins in a degree and 60secs in a minute

So to convert dms to deg
deg = deg + min/60 + sec/(60*60)

To convert deg back to dms.
deg = just take the whole number.
Then multiply the decimal part by 60 = the minutes are the whole number
Then multiply the decimal of that by 60 = the seconds are the result

eg 1deg 10min 20sec
= 1 + 10/60 + 20/3600 = 1.1722

1.1722 = take whole part = 1 deg
0.1722 * 60 = 10.333, take whole part = 10 mins
0.333 * 60 = 20.0 = the seconds

there is probably a button on your calculator to do this for you

I seriously can't thank you enough. You've certainly bumped my grade up with that, so thank you very much.

So if you had

26° 12’ 48”
172° 23’ 08”

How would you work out horizontal angle? I already know the answer is 146° 10’ 20” just not sure how to get to it.

Last question, promise as I'm nagging now :)

Last edited:
I seriously can't thank you enough. You've certainly bumped my grade up with that, so thank you very much.

So if you had

26° 12’ 48”
172° 23’ 08”

How would you work out horizontal angle? I already know the answer is 146° 10’ 20” just not sure how to get to it.

Last question, promise as I'm nagging now :)

26° 12’ 48” --> 172° 23’ 08”

end - start = 172° 23’ 08” - 26° 12’ 48” = 172.3855 - 26.2133 = 146.1722 = 146° 10' 20"

Anyone know how to display the bearing (deg/min/sec) with the Northing and Easting?

Javascript geodetic azimuth distance/bearing Calculator:

http://mysite.verizon.net/weltwireless/tech/distance_bearing.htm

mysite.verizon.net/weltwireless/tech/distance_bearing.htm

This calculator is based on "Vincenty's Formula" for elliptical Earth. It is not based on the "Great circle formula" which is innacurate and assumes a "round" Earth.
Comprises two programs essentially the same as INVERSE & FORWARD available at National Geodetic Survey.
INVERSE - computes the geodetic azimuth (bearing) and distance between two points, given their geographic positions. FORWARD - computes the geographic position of a point, given the geodetic azimuth (bearing) and distance from a point with known geographic position.

Calculate the geodetic azimuth and distance between two points (Inverse)
Enter lat/long. of two points, select distance units and Earth model and click "compute".

Note that if either point is very close to a pole, the course may be inaccurate, because of its extreme sensitivity to position and inevitable rounding error.

## 1. How do I find the bearing and distance between two points using a calculator?

To find the bearing and distance between two points, you will need to know the coordinates of the two points. Input the coordinates into your calculator and use the Pythagorean theorem to find the distance between the two points. Then, use the inverse tangent function to find the bearing.

## 2. Can I use any type of calculator to find bearing and distance?

Yes, you can use any calculator that has basic trigonometric functions such as sine, cosine, and tangent. Some calculators also have a built-in distance formula, which can make the process even easier.

## 3. What units should I use for the coordinates when finding bearing and distance?

The units for the coordinates should be consistent. You can use any unit for the coordinates (e.g. degrees, minutes, seconds or decimal degrees), as long as you use the same unit for both points.

## 4. How accurate are the results when finding bearing and distance using a calculator?

The accuracy of the results depends on the accuracy of the coordinates and the calculator. Most calculators have a limited number of decimal places, so the results may not be precise. It is important to round the final results to the appropriate number of significant figures.

## 5. Can I find the bearing and distance between multiple points using a calculator?

Yes, you can find the bearing and distance between multiple points using a calculator by repeating the process for each set of coordinates. It is important to keep track of which points you are measuring between to ensure accurate results.