Printer Friendly Version

NHOP sonde drop format

The official sounding obervation data is operationally transmitted in FM 37-IX TEMP DROP coded format as defined by the WMO Manual on Codes, No. 306 as explained in Appendix G, Table G-5 in the 1999 version of the Office of the Federal Co-ordinator for Meteorology (OFCM) National Hurricane Operation Plan (NHOP). Below is an abbreviated explanation of the format.

Example

Sonde # 991515151  1754 UTC  13 Sep 99
UZNT13 KWBC 131820
XXAA  63183 99256 70775 08057 99007 28448 01027 00064 28047 01028 
92752 22419 02525 85484 18448 04532 70127 10258 04029 50585 04159 
03530 40757 15371 03029 30968 30371 00526 88999 77999             
51515 10167 03230                                                 
61616 NOAA9 1708A FLOYD OB 01                                     
62626 SPL 2551N07756W MBL WND 01528=                              
XXBB  63188 99256 70775 08057 00007 28448 11002 28248 22929 22619 
33820 17458 44674 08858 55633 05433 66575 00624 77554 00356 88516 
02950 99504 03757 11498 04162 22484 05966 33447 09959 44438 10567 
55388 16974 66345 23370 77332 25363 88316 27773 99300 30571       
21212 00007 01027 11833 04532 22623 02026 33457 04534 44331 02018 
55300 00526                                                       
31313 09608 81754                                                 
51515 10167 03230                                                 
61616 NOAA9 1708A FLOYD OB 01                                     
62626 SPL 2551N07756W MBL WND 01528=                              


Header section

Sonde # 991515151  1754 UTC  13 Sep 99

The first field is sonde identification serial number followed by the time of launch (HHMM format) in Universal Time Code (UTC) and the date (day month year). This is a special HRD header in the transmitted message file for each sonde released, inserted by the Editsonde software. It is a non-standard WMO/NWS format line that is stripped before it is received by the National Weather Service Telecommunication Gateway (NWSTG).


WMO Abbreviated Heading
UZNT13 KWBC 131820
TTAAii CCCC YYGGgg
TT = General code and data type designators
  • U -- upper-air data
  • Z -- upper-level pressure, temperature, humidity and wind from a sonde released by carrier balloon or aircraft
AA = Geographical area designators
  • NT -- North Atlantic basin (N. Atlantic, Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico)
  • PN -- North Pacific basin
ii = Product index and distribution designator
  • 13 -- index for dropwindsonde product (int'l distribution)
CCCC = Processing center identifier
  • KWBC, which stands for the NWSTG
YY = Day of month message transmitted
GG = Hour message transmitted
gg = Minute message transmitted


Section A

XXAA  63183
MMmm YYGGId
MMmm = Indicator for drop report, section A
YY = Day of the month, +50 when wind data is in knots
GG = Actual time of obs, nearest whole hour
Id = Highest mandatory level for which wind is available
  • (7 = 700 hPa 5 = 500 hPa etc.)


99256 70775 08057
99LLL QLLLL MMMUO

99 = Indicator of position block
LLL = Latitude in tenths of a degree
Q = quadrent of globe.
LLLL = Longitude in tenths of a degree
MMM = Marsden square number
U = Units digit in reported latitude
O = Units digit in reported longitude


99007 28448 01027
99PPP TTTDD ddfff

99 = Indicator of surface data block
PPP = Pressure at surface in whole millibars
TTT = Temperature in tenths of °C
DD = Dew point depression in tenths °C
dd = wind direction nearest 5°
fff = wind speed in knots


00064 28047 01028
PPhhh TTTDD ddfff

PP = Pressure of standard isobaric surface
hhh = height of standeard pressure level
TTT = Temperature in tenths of °C
DD = Dew point depression in tenths °C
dd = wind direction nearest 5°
fff = wind speed in knots


88999 = Indicator tropopause not observed


77999 = Indicator maximum wind not observed


21212 = Data at significant levels wrt wind, as above


31313 09608 81754
31313 0rrss 8GGgg

31313 = Data on sounding system
rr = sonde system : 96 - dropsonde
ss = tracking system : 08 - satellite navigation
8 = Indicator for time of observation
GG = Actual time of launch in whole hours (UTC)
gg = Actual time of launch in minutes (UTC)


51515 10167 03230
51515 10167 0PPpp

51515 = Additional data in regional code
10167 = Temperature data doubtful between pressure levels
PP = Bottom pressure level in tens of hPa
pp = Top pressure level in tens of hPa


61616 NOAA9 1708A FLOYD OB 01
61616 AAAAA TTTTB SSSSS OO###

61616 = Mission information indicator
AAAAA = Aircraft designation (NOAA 49)
TTTT = Task number
B = Basin (A = Atlantic)
SSSSS = Storm or project name
OO### = Obs number for this flight


62626 SPL 2551N07756W MBL WND 01528=
62626 SPL LLLLNOOOOOW MBL WND ddfff

62626 = Indicator of Remarks block
SPL = Splash location
LLLLN = Latitude N
OOOOOW = Longitude W
MBL WND = Mean Boundary Layer Wind
dd = wind direction to nearest 5°
fff = wind speed in knots


Section B

XXBB  63188
MMmm YYGG/
MMmm = Indicator for drop report, section B
YY = Day of the month, +50 when wind is in knots
GG = Actual time of obs, nearest whole hour
/ = Filler number


22484 05966
LLPPP TTTDD
LL = Level number
PPP = Pressure of level
TTT = Temperature in tenths °
DD = Dew point depression in tenths °


Return to format page.

Employee Tools
Stay Connected