The RYA Yachtmaster Ocean Theory course is the first stage in obtaining the prestigious RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Ocean Certificate of Competence. This course is equally suited to those that aspire to blue water cruising or who just want to learn traditional navigation. The course will equip you with the necessary theoretical skills to carry out an ocean passage as mate or skipper. The course will cover all aspects of ocean navigation with particular emphasis on the use of astro-navigation and worldwide meteorology. The sessions on astro-navigation will unlock the mysteries of the sextant and allow you to confidently take sights at sea to obtain your position and carry out compass checks.
Ocean sailing is, however about more than just using a sextant. Another important aspect of ocean sailing is worldwide meteorology, passage planning and communications at sea. Publications that assist the ocean navigator such as routeing charts and other pilot books will be discussed. The course also recognises that there has been a vast improvement in technology available to help with ocean routeing and weather prediction. Time will be spent discussing the various computer programmes, internet sites and satellite/radio broadcasts available to the modern ocean navigator. Crew management, watch keeping, victualling, water and fuel management and emergency equipment are also covered.
Having successfully passed this theory course you will be ready to put the theory into practice on an ocean voyage. Upon returning candidates who already hold the RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Offshore Certificate of Competence can apply to be examined for the full RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Ocean Certificate of Competence.
The RYA Ocean theory is delivered by an accredited RYA Ocean instructor and the exam is delivered by a RYA ocean instructor.
1. The earth and the celestial sphere
Definition of observer’s zenith and position of a heavenly body in terms of latitude, longitude, GHA and declination
Right angle relationships, latitude and co-lat, declination and polar distance
Relationship between GHA, longitude and LHA
Tabulation of declination in nautical almanac
Rate of increase of hour angle with time
2. The PZX triangle
The tabulated components of the triangle, LHA, co-lat and polar distance
The calculable components, zenith distance and azimuth
Relationship between zenith distance and altitude
Introduction to the tabular method of solution in the Air Navigation Tables and the basic sight form
The use of calculators for the solution of the PZX triangle
3. The sextant
Practical guide to the use and care of a sextant at sea
Conversion of sextant altitude to true altitude
Application of dip, index error and refraction
Correction of side error, perpendicularity, index error and collimation error
4. Measurement of time
Definition of, and relationship between, UT, LMT, standard time and zone time
Rating of chronometers and watches
5. Meridian altitudes
Forecasting time of meridian altitude
Reduction of meridian altitude sights
6. Sun, star and other sights
Reduction and plotting of sun sights using Air Navigation Tables
Awareness of use of calculator for sight reduction
The plotting of sun-run-sun meridian altitude
Awareness of the reduction and plotting of sights obtained from stars, moon and planets
7. Compass checking
Use of amplitude and azimuth tables systems and/or calculator
8. Satellite Navigation Systems
Principles and limitations of use of all systems
9. Great circle sailing
Comparison of rhumb lines and great circles
Vertices and composite tracks
The computation of a series of rhumb lines approximating to a great circle by use of gnomonic and Mercator projections
General pressure distribution and prevailing winds over the oceans of the world
Tropical revolving storms, seasonal occurrence and forecasting by observation
11. Passage planning
Publications available to assist with planning of long passages (routeing charts, ocean passages of the world and other publications)
Preparation for ocean passage including survival equipment, victualling, water and fuel management, chafe protection, spares and maintenance
12. Passage making
Satellite and terrestrial systems
The course and exam are both held at the M17481 premises. The school is equipped with whiteboards, overhead projectors, tables for chart plotting, air-conditioning, tea and coffee facilities.
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We are a company specialising in delivering RYA tuition and the provision of yacht charters in Malta.
We deliver a range of internationally recognised RYA courses for both sail and power. So whether you're looking at a full-time job in the maritime sector or if it's just pleasure, we will guide and prepare...
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