How to Calculate Azimuth in Excel

By Lindsey Mason

An azimuth is defined as "an arc of the horizon measured between a fixed point and the vertical circle passing through the center of an object." This measurement is often used in the fields of astronomy, navigation and artillery. In order to calculate the azimuth using Microsoft Excel, you will need the geographic coordinates of both points being used and the distance between them.

Entering the Geographic Coordinates

Step 1

Select the destination cells for the latitude and longitude of both points and right-click.

Step 2

Select "Format Cells" and click "Time."

Step 3

Choose the "hh:mm:ss" format and click "OK."

Step 4

Select new destination cells for converting the "Time" values to degrees.

Step 5

Enter this formula: "=[destination cell]*24." This is necessary for correct calculation.

Entering the Formula

Step 1

Select your destination cell.

Step 2

Enter this formula: "=ASIN(COS(RADIANS([Latitude 2 cell])*SIN([Distance])/SIN(RADIANS([Longitude 2 cell]-[Longitude 1 cell])))))." The conversion to radians is necessary for the trigonometric functions to work properly.

Step 3

Select a second destination cell and center this formula: "=DEGREES([Above destination cell])" to convert the answer from the formula back to degrees.