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User Manual / System settings / Solver time step (A)


(These setting are enabled through the application preferences.)

You are encouraged to use the automatic time step method.

Automatic time step.

When this setting is disabled, which is encouraged, the solver uses a sophisticated method of automatically choosing an appropriate isochrone time interval, based on a number of factors.

Without going into great detail, the solver starts with an initial time interval of 20 minutes. As the algorithm progresses, if the solver is encountering a lot of land intersections, it may choose to keep the time increment small. If the solver finds itself sailing in open waters then it starts to slowly increase the time step.

The maximum isochrone interval the solver chooses is 2 hours.

As the solver sees that it is starting to approach the target point, it will start reducing its time step. This has the effect of generating additional isochrone points, which generate more accurate arrival information.

Override automatic time step.

If you have a preference for generating all the isochrones at a single, fixed, uniform time interval then you can enable this setting and specify the interval.

One situation where you may want to set a fixed, small time increment, is if you sail in waters closely bounded by land. The initial time step when using the automatic method is 20 minutes. If 20 minutes of travel represents a long distance for the waters you sail, you may want to set a smaller fixed time step. Note that, even in this situation, you should first try the automatic time step.


Examples of different time steps.

Automatic time step.
One hour time step.
Half hour time step.

In this example open ocean passage, there are three paths generated, each with a different time step, and they are all essentially all the same. The time duration of the paths are, from left to right: 8 days 8.6 hours, 8 days 8.8 hours, 8 days 8.8 hours.

The largest difference between these three examples is the amount of time taken to compute the solution. On a 2017 13” Macbook Pro, the average of three runs for these examples is: 0.588 sec, 0.890 sec and 2.95 sec. (If you have experiences with a different weather routing system, how does its performance compare for these examples?)

Using the automatic time step is highly recommended.


LuckGrib Weather Routing is currently only available on macOS. Support for iOS and iPadOS is under development.