Nautical Measurement

Updated February 21, 2017 | Factmonster Staff

Below is the unit of length for sea or nautical miles, as well as information about fathoms, cable length, and knots.

A fathom is 6 feet, the length of rope a man can extend from open arm to open arm. The rope was lowered into the sea to measure depth.

A cable length is the length of a ship's cable, about 600 feet.

A nautical mile is 10 cable lengths, or 6,076 feet.

1 nautical mile = 1.1508 miles

A knot is the measure of speed on water. One knot is 1 nautical mile per hour.

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