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Gateway File Services
English Descriptive Directory Names
for
Individual Data-Specific Products
Introduction

The U.S. National Weather Service provides anonymous FTP access to files containing individual coded observations and text warnings and forecasts under a special "English Descriptive Format" directory and file name structure.  The content of the international aviation data, U.S. warnings, and all types of hydrometeorological forecasts are stored as transmitted by the source, however, they are parsed into separate specific files using file names of a site ID or warning and forecast area designator or by AWIPS communication identifier.   The internal content of the files are ASCII character code. The naming conventions for the files are spelled-out in English or defined by NWS area designator names using a "zone designator " or by a "county warning area" number to reflect the geographical location of the content of the file. See our U.S. Maps web pages for details of the numbering system.

The data is available at URL tgftp.nws.noaa.gov/data via anonymous FTP. There is a Help Guide that shows how to access the server and retrieve the files.

The Weather Forecast Office last issued original complete text messages are stored in the RAW subdirectory. The last received version of these text products are filed by subdirectory names using the first two characters of the AWIPS communication identifier. The messages are filed within these subdirectories by the complete AWIPS communication identifier. Refer to the /raw/ subdirectories to initially view the filing system used for a clear understanding of the structure. Remember to always check data-time on all messages before using them.


Products Available

The set of data that are separated and stored under different sub-directories and files include all of the data types listed here. The METAR and TAF data are from global locations and the remainder are U.S. forecast products.

Data Types List
  • METAR observations
  • Terminal Area Forecasts
  • Daily Climatological Report
  • Air Quality Forecast
  • City Forecast
  • Extended Forecast
  • Coastal Marine Forecast
  • Great Lakes Marine Forecast
  • High Seas Marine Forecast
  • Near Shore Marine Forecast
  • Coastal and Offshore Marine Forecast
  • Marine Weather Statement
  • Short Term Forecast
  • Recreational Forecast
  • State Forecast
  • Zone Forecast
  • Area Conditions
  • Record Weather Events
  • Area Weather Summary
  • Temperature and Precipitation Report
  • State Weather Summary
  • Fire Weather Information
  • Flash Flood Statement
  • Flash Flood Warning
  • Flash Flood Watch
  • Coastal Flood Statement
  • Flood Statement
  • Flood Warning
  • Urgent Weather Message
  • Severe Weather Statement
  • Special Marine Warning
  • Special Weather Statement
  • Severe Thunderstorm Warning
  • Tornado Warning
Sub-directory and File Descriptions

All observational data and warnings/forecasts are filed under the "/data/" sub-directory on the server.

Observational Data
      observations/metar Latest report by ICAO identifier
          /cycles/ Grouped by hour of all sites
          /decoded/ Last received by site and decoded into elements
          /stations/ Last received terminal forecast by ICAO site Idendifier
          /trend/ Computed history by site for event changes over time
      observations/state_roundup/ Area Conditions (by state identifier)
      observations/storm_rpt/ Storm Reports by event (by state identifier)
Hurricane Products
      hurricane_products/ By ocean area name & storm number
          atlantic/ By area includes outlooks (update seasonal)
          central_pacific/ By area includes outlooks (update seasonal)
          eastern_pacific/ By area includes outlooks (update seasonal)
          local_stmt/ By area (update seasonal)
          western_pacific/ By area (update seasonal)
Climate Data
      climate/daily/ Daily Climatological Report
Forecase Products
      forecasts/taf By ICAO 4-letter site identifier
          /cycles/ 24 hour coverage of 6 hour intervals of all sites by ICAO identifier
          /stations/ Last received terminal forecast by ICAO site identifier
      forecasts/air_quality/ Air Quality Forecast
      forecasts/city/ City Forecast
      forecasts/extended/ Extended Forecast
      forecasts/marine/ By marine zone area number or name
          coastal/ Coastal Marine Forecast
          great_lakes/ Great Lakes Marine Forecast
          high_seas/ High Seas Marine Forecast
          near_shore/ Near Shore Marine Forecast
          offshore/ Coastal and Offshore Marine Forecast
          weather_stmt/ Marine Weather Statement
      forecasts/nowcast/ Short Term Forecast
      forecasts/recreation/ Recreational Forecast
      forecasts/state/ State Forecast
      forecasts/zone/ Zone Forecast
Original Forecasts as Transmitted
      raw/ All warning and forecast products as transmitted (stored by WMO heading file names)
Records and Summaries
      records/ Record Weather Events
      summaries/area/ Area Weather Summary
      summaries/max_min_temp_and_precip/ Temperature & Precipatation Report
      summaries/weather/ State Weather Summary
Watches and Warnings
      watches_warnings/ By county warning zone numbers
          fire_weather/ Fire Weather Information
          flash_flood/statement/ Flash Flood Statement
          flash_flood/warning/ Flash Flood Warning
          flash_flood/watch/ Flash Flood Watch
          flood/coastal/ Coastal Flood Statement
          flood/statement/ Flood Statement
          flood/warning/ Flood Warning
          non_precip/ Urgent Weather Message
          severe_weather_stmt/ Severe Weather Statement
          special_marine/ Special Marine Warning
          special_weather_stmt/ Special Weather Statement
          thunderstorm/ Severe Thunderstorm Warning
          tornado/ Tornado Warning

Delivery Details

Data is updated on the FTP server every two to five minutes with the latest information received from NWS communications sources. File names within each data subcategory directory use either site ICAO identifiers, zone numbers, country warning area numbers, or text names to indicate the content subject. The information is "pre-processed" to build the individual files. The files are stored as quickly as they are built. All files are over-written by new received information after being processed.

The forecast information stored under the "/raw/" sub-directory is an exception to the parsed data and products. The original bulletins, as transmitted on the FOS, are also stored with no parsing other than by the first two characters of the heading under which it was sent. In this data set the file names are the WMO headings. Please note that these products can be very large and could take several minutes to retrieve. The bulletins are received by the Gateway, passed to the server, broken-down and filed for retrieval.

Data files are written only when data of that subcategory type is available. There is no attempt to archive this information.

Further questions or comments concerning data in the /data/ path may be directed to NWS.ISG@noaa.gov.

 

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     Page last Modified: 25 January, 2012 4:08 PM