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ASCII RCM Radar File

This type of file is generated by the radcvt program for use with the WXP radar display program.

FORMAT

The format of the file is as follows:

WXPRAD
hhnnZ dd mmm yy
RCM SUMMARY
+
rr
echos
+ rr
...
** id num mode
T ss lat lon data
T ss lat lon data
...
** id num mode
...

Header Format

The first line of the file is the string:

WXPRAD

which is used to determine file type. The second line of the data file contains the date and time in the following format:

hhnnZ dd mmm yy

Where:

hhnn -- Hour and minute of the observation in GMT
dd -- Day of the observation
mmm -- A three letter abbreviation for the month
yy -- The last two digits of the year

Example: 21Z 14 JUN 98

Radar Summary Data

The radar summary data are displayed on the following lines. Line three of the data file marks the start of the radar summary information:

RCM SUMMARY

This is followed by a row identifier line containing the following:

+ rr
echoes

Where:

  • rr -- The row number on a 360 row by 452 column grid.
  • echoes -- echo information.  A total of 452 echo data points.

The following couple of lines contain echo data.  There is a total of 452 echo points for each row spread out over 7 lines. The echo data is followed by another row identifier and another 7 lines of echo data.  This is repeated until all 360 rows of the summary have been written to the file.

RCM SUMMARY
+ 0
...
+ 90
                                           11 1
                      42                   11  252  422221  11  11111   211  1
1              523       122  5642 1         1   1211

                                                      1

+ 91

                      22 1    1            2  1462 2541222   111111121 1522 11
1              1          21 365 1 1   1 11  11 121 1
                                             2

                  1
+ 92

                       1      1           251  461 2351221   11    1  22111 11
11                          5553 1311114111112 13212    1



+ 93
...

Radar Site Data

After the radar summary is listed, decoded information from each RCM report is listed for radar annotation. Each radar site is delimited with a header line with the station ID, station number and mode.  Storm information follows:

** id num mode
T ss lat lon data
T ss lat lon data
...
** id num mode
...

Where:

  • id -- Station identifier (3 letter)
  • num -- Station number (3 digit)
  • mode -- Station mode
    PCPN -- Precipitation mode
    CLAR -- Clear air mode
    NE -- No Echo
    NA -- Not Available
    OM -- Out for Maintenance
  • T -- Type of storm report
    Z -- Max Echo Top location
    T -- TVS (Tornado Vortex Signature) location
    M -- MESO (Mesocyclone) location
    S -- Storm location
  • ss -- Storm ID
    If type is Z, ss is the max echo top in 100s of feet
  • lat lon -- Location of storm in latitude and longitude
  • data -- Storm data
    If type is S, data is "dir spd top hail", where "dir spd" is the direction (in degrees) and speed (in knots) of the storm, "top" is the echo tops of the storm (in 100s of feet) and hail is the hail probability (0=none, 1=possible, 2=likely).

An example of converted RCM reports are listed below:

** BMX 320 CLAR
Z  30   33.461  -86.498
** EOX 362 CLAR
Z 280   30.750  -83.470
** HTX 826 CLAR
Z  70   34.990  -86.217
** MOB 509 PCPN
Z 320   28.647  -88.583
S  O0   29.715  -88.939 056 006 151 0
** MXX 354 CLAR
Z 130   32.641  -87.593
** LZK 395 PCPN
Z 530   35.064  -92.716
S  A1   34.592  -93.176 287 003 398 1
S  H0   34.799  -92.786 133 008 315 1
S  H2   34.614  -92.276 200 008 282 1
S  P7   34.956  -92.632 072 004 490 0
S  N0   34.540  -93.968 217 013 361 0
S  L1   35.169  -91.782 315 007 323 0
S  W2   34.452  -93.989 293 005 207 0
S  D1   34.937  -92.525 355 054 282 0
S  U2   35.081  -91.807 278 011 284 0
S  R1   34.717  -93.926 287 006 193 0
S  F2   35.006  -92.394 296 034 210 0
S  E8   34.986  -92.286 341 011 150 0

Describing the information from LZK (Little Rock AR). The site number is 395 and it is in PCPN (precipitation) mode. The max top is 53,000 feet and 35.064N, 92.716W.  The first storm is "A1" which is at 34.592N, 93.176W.  Its movement is 287 degrees at 3 knots. The max echo top is 39,800 feet and hail is possible.

EXAMPLES

A sample radar converted file would look like:

WXPRAD
1915Z  3 AUG 98
RCM SUMMARY
+  0
...
+165

                1111                             1       1  1   1 11  11  122
1221111  11 1  221242221111     111562   343
      34423221         11                        1111
                                   1              1                        1
   1   1   11      1211111111
+166

                111                              1   11 1    1     1  111 1221
 12211112111211311143221122       1354      12  1                  1
      32222451   221   111                       1111
                      11          11             1 1                     1  1
       21  11      121121111
+167
                1
                                                                 1 1 1112121
  532211113441  1 133331121      1133                             1
     1  413661145421 11111                        111   1
        1               1      1111                                         1
   1   21  1111      112      1
+168
                1111
                                                   1 11                 221111
    234221562        11     11                     22
      1343353116631221111                              11
                             1                       1   1          1      11
   1   11  1111      11 11   11
+169
...
** BMX 320 CLAR
Z  30   33.461  -86.498
** EOX 362 CLAR
Z 280   30.750  -83.470
** HTX 826 CLAR
Z  70   34.990  -86.217
** MOB 509 PCPN
Z 320   28.647  -88.583
S  O0   29.715  -88.939 056 006 151 0
** MXX 354 CLAR
Z 130   32.641  -87.593
** LZK 395 PCPN
Z 530   35.064  -92.716
S  A1   34.592  -93.176 287 003 398 1
S  H0   34.799  -92.786 133 008 315 1
S  H2   34.614  -92.276 200 008 282 1
S  P7   34.956  -92.632 072 004 490 0
S  N0   34.540  -93.968 217 013 361 0
S  L1   35.169  -91.782 315 007 323 0
S  W2   34.452  -93.989 293 005 207 0
S  D1   34.937  -92.525 355 054 282 0
S  U2   35.081  -91.807 278 011 284 0
S  R1   34.717  -93.926 287 006 193 0
S  F2   35.006  -92.394 296 034 210 0
S  E8   34.986  -92.286 341 011 150 0

FILES

  • rad.cty -- used to located radar sites on the LFM grid

SEE ALSO


For further information about WXP, email technical-support@weather.unisys.com
Last updated by Dan Vietor on August 3, 1998