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Thread: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

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    Default What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Hello!
    A stupid question : What is the value of the mile in ORBís?
    Is it the land mile = 1609 meters
    or the nautical mile = 1852 meters
    or the Data mile = 6000 feet = 1828.8 meters ?
    Thanks

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Not stupid. Assuming something is stupid, so asking (or confirming) is not.

    I didn't think nautical miles were used by the RAF in WW2 but may have post war from some point. However, being of a certain age those numbers mean nothing to me as it will always be 1760 yards or 5280 feet to a mile.

    Peter

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Only for a statute mile PNK - and 1 Nautical Mile = 6080 feet .
    But I agree that it would depend on the date of the ORB ( and perhaps which Command that the ORB was from ?) - most wartime ORB's would presumably have been in statute miles - 5280 feet = 1 mile.
    Nautical miles were easier for navigation and not all RAF Aircraft ASI's were calibrated in MPH during WW2 - some were already calibrated in Knots.

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Not a stupid question. Bomber Command used statute miles to begin with and moved over to nautical miles but the transition was not immediate, and depended on the availability of airspeed units calibrated in knots. 6-Group was in transition at the end of the war. 419 Squadron finished the war still using statute miles.

    There’s an earlier thread on this subject. I’ll see if I can find it.

    Jim
    Last edited by JDCAVE; 7th June 2021 at 03:40.

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    I'd never heard of a data mile. Having looked it up I am now a little wiser but still have no idea of just who invented it nor why it became standard, nor who standardised it.

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Thanks for the answers.


    The ORB's and Combat Reports I am studying are those of 226 squadron and 310, 312 ,313 and 130 squadrons during Ramrod 50 on January 29, 1943 (attack on the Morlaix viaduct).


    This allows me to locate the wreck at sea of the Boston AL278 (crew F / O Clifford Stanley Thomas, F / O Richard Lawrence Grenville Bowyer, Sgt Robert Morton, Sgt George Currah) in a restricted area North-East of Trťgastel in Brittany. .

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Early 1943 for light bomber/attack aircraft - almost certainly in Statute Miles where 1 mile = 5280 feet.

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Probably also pertinent to note that any mention of miles in those days (WW2) were only rather rough estimates, even when trying to locate an aircraft wreck in the hills, mountains or fiords. In which case, the TYPE of mile would not really matter that much in the greater scheme of things. How often do we read (in a WW2 context) that an aircraft wreck was 17.37 nautical miles SSE of the centre of the aircraft's base? (unless it was on a well-known and unmistakable peak, for instance, or a famous building!) This sort of accuracy could only happen in the relatively modern age when highly accurate equipment was in service and calibrated to give any such accuracy. Previously it would have been possible to work backwards from a wreck in the hills to calculate a reasonably good lat/long position, but anything to do with the exact position of any aircraft in flight, or crashed on "rough" ground or down in the sea would have been (necessarily) fairly rough estimates, and everybody concerned would have been aware of these weaknesses, and would have acted accordingly.
    David D

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Further to Davidís comments, a well maintained formation could easily be +/- 5-10 Miles either side of track. Good would be +/- 5. Good luck with your search!

    Jim

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    Default Re: What is the value of the mile in ORBís?

    Just as an aside - when I did my PPL flying course at Scone,Perth (pron Skoon) with AST in 1972,our navigation calculation/flight planning was always in Nm (nautical miles) but the aircraft ASI's were calibrated in MPH (Cessna 150's at that time) - istr that our normal cruising speed for x-country nav was 100mph which we converted to Knots and flight planned using our 'Whizz Wheels' at 87 Knots.

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