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Home » Weather and Routing » Pilot Charts for North of Papua New Guinea questio

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04/04/2013 09:25:28

Paul Jennings<br>Malaysia<br>Taniwha
Paul Jennings

Posts: 6

I've been looking at the pilot charts for the water north of PNG, and have found a discrepancy in the current flow between the "Indian Ocean" charts, the "South Pacific" charts, and the "North Pacific" charts. I'd be interested in any interpretations and comments regarding this.

I'm using the US pilot charts downloaded free from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency site ( As far as I am aware they are charts that are as good as any.

I have downloaded the Indian Ocean series, the North Pacific series, and the South Pacific series.

For illustrative purposes here, I'll be referring to the April charts, and to the grid square between 0 deg - 10 deg N, and 150 deg - 160 deg E (that puts you smack in the Caroline Islands, above the Solomons & East PNG).

On the South Pacific chart there is a clear Eastbound current running at 4 deg N at 10-15 nm/day (0.4 - 0.6 kts).

On the Indian Ocean pilot chart there is no Eastbound current, only WNW currents shown at 0.7 kts.

The North Pacific chart shows only westbound currents in the 150 deg E to 160 deg E zone, but an eastbound current at 140 deg E at 0.6 kts.

The wind info for the 3 charts is identical, so I can't understand why the current info would be different.

The following month all 3 charts seem to be in rough agreement that an Eastward current has set in, but the current data is slightly different.

Again, I would expect that from any given agency, overlapping areas on their pilot charts should show identical information: and that's certainly true for the wind info, but not the current info.

Any thoughts or comments on this?

Which should I believe?



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