Examples of Aviation Weather Products

Domestic TAF

TAF NZRO 192053Z 1921/2012 01015G28KT 30KM -SHRA SCT020 BKN035 TEMPO 2001/2004
5000 +TSRAGS BKN010CB
2000FT WIND 36020KT
QNH MNM 1015 MAX 1024

Decode of Domestic TAF

Code Decode
TAF NZRO 192053Z 1921/2012 Aerodrome forecast for Rotorua, issued at 2053 UTC on the 19th of the month, valid from 2100 UTC on the 19th to 1200 UTC on the 20th of the month.
01015G28KT Surface wind: 010 degrees true, 15 knots gusts 28 knots.
30KM Visibility: 30 kilometres.
-SHRA Weather: Light shower of rain.
SCT020 BKN035 Cloud: scattered cloud (3-4 oktas) with a base at 2000 feet above aerodrome level, broken cloud (5-7 oktas) with a base at 3500 feet above aerodrome level
TEMPO 2001/2004 5000 +TSRAGS
BKN010CB
Temporarily, between 0100 and 0400 UTC on the 20th of the month, visibility will reduce to 5000 metres in heavy thunderstorms with rain and hail, and broken cumulonimbus cloud at 1000 feet above aerodrome level.
2000FT WIND 36020KT Wind at 2000 feet 360 degrees true at 20 knots.
QNH MNM 1015 MAX 1024 The minimum and maximum QNH during the forecast period is expected to be 1015 hPa and 1024 hPa respectively.

International TAF

TAF NZCH 102305Z 1100/1200 20008KT 9999 FEW012 SCT017
TEMPO 1100/1108 BKN012
BECMG 1108/1110 06010KT
TEMPO 1108/1121 6000DZ BKN012

Decode of International TAF

Code Decode
TAF NZCH 102305Z 1100/1200 Aerodrome forecast for Christchurch International Airport, issued at 2305 UTC on the 10th of the month, valid from 0000 UTC on the 11th of the month to 0000 UTC on the 12th of the month.
20008KT Surface wind: 200 degrees true, 8 knots.
9999 Visibility: 10 kilometres or more.
FEW012 SCT017 Cloud: few cloud (1-2 oktas) with a base at 1200 feet above aerodrome level, scattered cloud (3-4 oktas) with a base at 1700 feet above aerodrome level.
TEMPO 1100/1108 BKN012 Temporarily, between 0000 and 0800 UTC on the 11th, broken cloud (5-7 oktas) with a base of 1200 feet above aerodrome level.
BECMG 1108/1110 06010KT Becoming, between 0800 and 1000 UTC on the 11th, wind 060 degrees true, 10 knots.
TEMPO 1108/1121 6000DZ BKN012 Temporarily, between 0800 and 2100 UTC on the 11th, visibility will reduce to 6000 metres in drizzle, with broken cloud (5-7 oktas) at 1200 feet above aerodrome level.

METAR

NZWP, NZOH, NZMF only

METAR NZMF 230200Z 33006KT 20KM -SHRA FEW015 SCT040 BKN050 10/08 Q1008

Decode of METAR

Code Decode
METAR NZMF 230200Z Routine Meteorological Aerodrome Report for Milford aerodrome, at 0200 UTC on the 23rd of the month.
33006KT Surface wind: 330 degrees true, 6 knots.
20KM Visibility: 20 kilometres.
SHRA Present weather: light shower of rain
FEW015
SCT040
BKN050
Cloud: Few cloud (1-2 oktas) with a base of 1500 feet above aerodrome level, scattered cloud (3-4 oktas) with a base of 4000 feet above aerodrome level and broken cloud (5-7 oktas) with a base of 5,000 feet above aerodrome level
10/08 Temperature: 10 degrees Celsius; Dew Point: 8 degrees Celsius
Q1008 QNH: 1008 hectoPascals (hPa)

SPECI

SPECI NZWP 010000Z 03022G34KT 010V080 2000 –DZRA FEW003  BKN006
22/21 Q0997 RERA

Decode of SPECI

Code Decode
SPECI NZWP Special Meteorological Aerodrome Report for Whenuapai aerodrome, issued at 0000 UTC on the 1st of the month.
03022G34KT  010V080 Surface wind: 030 degrees true, 22 knots gusting to 34 knots. Wind direction varying between 010 degrees true and 080 degrees true.
2000 Visibility: 2000 metres.
-DZRA Weather: Light drizzle and rain at the time of the observation.
FEW003 BKN006 Cloud: Few cloud (1-2 oktas) with a base at 300 feet above aerodrome level, and broken cloud (5–7 oktas) with a base at 600 feet above aerodrome level.
22/21 Temperature: 22 degrees Celsius Dew Point: 21 degrees Celsius.
Q0997 QNH: 997 hectoPascals.
RERA Recent weather: Moderate or heavy rain has been observed at the aerodrome since the last routine report.

METAR AUTO (provided by Automatic Weather Stations (AWS))

Example 1 – All aerodromes except NZAA, NZWN, NZCH, NZWP, NZOH, NZMF

METAR NZNS 011400Z AUTO 35004KT 310V010 29KM -SHRA OVC048/// 19/16 Q1021

Decode of METAR AUTO

Code Decode
METAR NZNS 011400Z AUTO Routine Meteorological Aerodrome Report for Nelson aerodrome, issued at 1400 UTC on the 1st of the month. Observation made by an Automatic Weather Station.
35004KT 310V010 Surface wind: 350 degrees true, 4 knots. Wind direction varying between 310 degrees true and 010 degrees true.
29KM Visibility: 29 kilometres.
-SHRA Weather: Light shower of rain.
OVC048/// Cloud: Overcast cloud (8 oktas) with a base at 4800 feet above aerodrome. The three strokes (///) indicate that no TCU or CB cloud could be identified by the Automatic Weather Station.
19/16 Temperature: 19 degrees Celsius, Dew Point: 16 degrees Celsius.
Q1021 QNH: 1021 hectoPascals.

Notes about METAR AUTO Reports.:

  1. At aerodromes where METAR AUTO are issued, no SPECI observations are provided.
  2. METAR AUTO are issued routinely every 30 minutes, on the hour and half-hour, day and night.
  3. Lightning data from an independent lightning detection network will be added to METAR AUTO to provide additional observational data.
  4. METAR AUTO will not include directional visibility variations, “vicinity” (VC) present weather, or cloud type (ie, TCU and CB).
  5. When the weather sensor is temporarily inoperative, two strokes (//) are inserted in the present weather field.
  6. When no cloud is detected below 10,000 feet by the cloud sensor, NCD (no cloud detected) is used instead of SKC (sky clear).
  7. When cloud is detected, three strokes (///) are placed at the end of each cloud layer group, to indicate that the AWS could not identify TCU or CB.

Example 2 - NZAA, NZWN, NZCH only

METAR NZWN 162000Z AUTO 36016KT 9999 // BKN025/// 16/12 Q1028 NOSIG RMK KAUKAU 36033KT

Decode of METAR AUTO

Code Decode
METAR NZWN 162000Z AUTO Routine Meteorological Aerodrome Report for Wellington aerodrome, at 2000 UTC on the 16th of the month. Observation made by an Automatic Weather Station
36016KT Surface wind: 360 degrees true, 16 knots
9999 Visibility: 10 kilometers or more
//

Present weather:  the present weather cannot be observed due to a temporary failure of the system/sensor.

BKN025///

Cloud: Broken cloud (5-7 oktas) with a base of 2500 feet above aerodrome level. The three strokes (///) indicate that no TCU or CB could be identified by the AWS

16/12

Temperature: 16 degrees Celsius; Dew point: 12 degrees Celsius

Q1028

QNH: 1028 hectoPascals (hPa)

NOSIG

TREND forecast: No significant change to the reported conditions for the next two hours (ie until 2200 UTC on the 16th of the month)

RMK KAUKAU 36033KT

Wind at Mt Kaukau: 360 degrees true, 33 knots

Example 3 – NZAA, NZCH only with RVR

METAR NZAA 010000Z AUTO 03022G34KT 010V080 2000 R05/1300D -DZRA FEW003/// BKN006/// 22/21 Q0997 RERA WS R05 TEMPO 6000 RA

Decode of METAR AUTO

Code Decode
METAR NZAA 010000Z AUTO

Routine Meteorological Aerodrome Report for Auckland aerodrome, at 0000 UTC on the 1st of the month. Observation made by an Automatic Weather Station

03022G34KT

Surface wind: 030 degrees true, 22 knots, gusts to 34 knots

010V080

Surface wind direction:  varying between 010 degrees true and 080 degrees true

2000

Visibility: 2000 metres

R05/1300D

Runway visual range:  1300 metres for the touchdown zone of runway 05, with a downward tendency observed

-DZRA

Present weather: light drizzle and rain

FEW003///
BKN006///

Cloud: Few cloud (1-2 oktas) with a base of 300 feet above aerodrome level, broken cloud (5-7 oktas) with a base of 600 feet above aerodrome level.  The three strokes (///) at the end of both cloud groups indicate that no TCU or CB could be identified by the AWS

22/21

Temperature: 22 degrees Celsius; Dew point: 21 degrees Celsius

Q0997

QNH: 997 hectoPascals (hPa)

RERA

Recent weather: Moderate or heavy rain has been observed at the aerodrome since the last routine report.

WS R05

Windshear: windshear reported by pilots or the control tower along the takeoff and/or approach path to runway 05 between runway level and 1600 feet AGL

TEMPO 6000 RA

TREND forecast: temporary fluctuations in the visibility and weather (6000 metres and rain) are expected to occur, and will last for a period of less than one hour in each instance. Such fluctuations are expected to occur during the next 2 hours, i.e., between 0000 and 0200 UTC, and to take place sufficiently infrequently for the prevailing conditions to remain those reported in the METAR AUTO

Notes about METAR AUTO Reports:

  1. No SPECI observations are provided.
  2. METAR AUTO are issued routinely every 30 minutes
  3. Lightning data from an independent lightning detection network will be added to METAR AUTO to provide additional observational data.
  4. Forecasters will add additional information on occasion based on high-resolution satellite and weather radar imagery, and webcams installed at NZAA, NZWN, NZCH. This may include reference to CB or TCU clouds, fog or precipitation at or in the vicinity of the aerodrome.
  5. When the weather sensor is temporarily inoperative, two strokes (//) are inserted in the present weather field.
  6. When cloud is detected, three strokes (///) are placed at the end of each cloud layer group, to indicate that the AWS could not identify TCU or CB. However, CB or TCU will be included if a forecaster is able to observe CB or TCU by reference to the additional observational data referred to in 4. above

AAW

AAW example (PDF 4.7 MB)

GNZSIGWX

GNZSIGWX example (PDF 438 KB)

GRAFOR

GRAFOR example (PDF 4.7 MB)

SIGMET (Textual)

WSNZ21 NZKL 140010 NZZC SIGMET 1 VALID 140010/140410 NZKL-
NZZC NEW ZEALAND FIR SEV ICE FCST N OF S3958 E17502 AND S OF S3516 E17355 FL120/250 MOV S 20KT NC

Decode of Sigmet

Code Decode
WSNZ21 NZKL 140010 WMO meteorological message header (WSNZ21), issued by the Wellington Meteorological Watch Office (NZKL) at 0010UTC on the 14th day of the month. The message header (WSNZ21)can be ignored by pilots.
NZZC Issued for the Christchurch Flight Information Centre.
SIGMET  SIGnificant METeorological information for pilots (a message containing information about hazardous weather)
1 The 1st SIGMET issued on the 14th day of the month since 0000UTC.
VALID 140010/140410 Valid between 0010 and 0410 UTC on the 14th day of the month.
NZKL- Issued by the Wellington Meteorological Watch Office (MWO), Kelburn, Wellington. The "-" sign indicates the end of the 1st line of the message
NZZC NEW ZEALAND FIR Issued for the New Zealand Flight Information Region. (NZZC)
SEV ICE FCST N OF S3958 E17502 AND S OF S3516 E17355 FL120/250 MOV S 20KT NC Severe icing is forecast north of latitude 39 degrees 58 minutes south, 175 degrees 02 minutes east (ie Wanganui – NZWU) and south of latitude 35 degrees 16 minutes south, longitude 173 degrees 55 east (ie Kerikeri – NZKK), between flight level 120 and flight level 250, moving south at 20 knots.
NC Intensity not expected to change (NC = no change)

SIGMET (Graphical)

SIGMET(Graphical SIGMET Monitor (GSM)) (PDF 2.1 MB)

Volcanic Ash Advisory (VAA)


FVPS04 NZKL 250243
VA ADVISORY
DTG: 20171025/0243Z
VAAC: WELLINGTON
VOLCANO: RUAPEHU 241100
PSN: S3917 E17534
AREA: NEW ZEALAND
SUMMIT ELEV: 2797M
ADVISORY NR: 2017/3
INFO SOURCE: WEBCAM, SATELLITE IMAGERY, GNS
AVIATION COLOUR CODE: RED
ERUPTION DETAILS: ERUPTION AT 20171025/0210Z
OBS VA DTG: 25/0233Z
OBS VA CLD: SFC/FL210 S3815 E17615 - S3815 E17700 - S3900 E17700 - S3915 E17530 - S3815 E17615 MOV N 5KT
FCST VA CLD +6 HR: 25/0833Z SFC/FL210 S3730 E17800 - S3815 E17815 - S3900 E17715 - S3915 E17530 - S3730 E17700 - S3730 E17800
FCST VA CLD +12 HR: 25/1433Z SFC/FL210 S3915 E17545 - S3915 E17530 - S3730 E17700 - S3715 E17815 - S3730 E17915 - S3815 E17900 - S3845 E17730 - S3915 E17545
FCST VA CLD +18 HR: 25/2033Z SFC/FL150 S3915 E17545 - S3915 E17530 - S3745 E17730 - S3815 E17815 - S3900 E17745 - S3915 E17545 FL150/210 S3915 E17530 - S3645 E17615 - S3630 E17730 - S3730 E17800 - S3915 E17530
RMK: VA PARTIALLY OBSCURED BY MET CLOUD ALONG SOUTHERN BOUNDARY. VA HEIGHT AND FORECAST MOVEMENT BASED ON HIMAWARI-8 IMAGERY, NZPP 25/0000Z SOUNDING AND MODEL
GUIDANCE.
NXT ADVISORY: NO LATER THAN 20171025/0843Z=


Decode of Volcanic Ash Advisory (VAA)

FVPS01 NZKL 250243Z WMO meteorological message header (FVPS01), issued by the Wellington Meteorological Office (NZKL) at 0243 UTC on the 25th day of the month. The message header (FVPS01) can be ignored by pilots.
VA Advisory Type of message (Volcanic Ash Advisory)
DTG: 20171025/0243Z DTG (Date, time group): Date and time of the VAA message (yyyymmdd/nnnnZ)(2017, October, 25th/0243 UTC).
VAAC: Wellington Name of the Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (Wellington) issuing the advisory.
VOLCANO: RUAPEHU 241100 Name of the volcano (Ruapehu) and its international number (241100)
PSN: S3917 E17534 Position (PSN), i.e. location, of the volcano in degrees and minutes (South 39 deg 17 min, East 175 deg 34 min)
AREA: NEW ZEALAND Country, region or area in which the volcano is located (New Zealand).
SUMMIT ELEV: 2797M Summit elevation of the volcano (2797 metres)
ADVISORY NR: 2017/3 Advisory (or reference) number concerning the volcano. 2017/3 indicates it is the third advisory to be issued for the current activity of this volcano in 2017.
INFO SOURCE: WEBCAM, SATELLITE IMAGERY, GNS Source of the information about the volcano and ash. The observation (OBS) is based of webcam and satellite images and from information provided by GNS Science, who operate the New Zealand volcano observatory.
AVIATION COLOUR CODE: RED The aviation colour code is RED, see Living with Volcanic Ash Episodes (PDF 1.59 MB) in Civil Aviation for a description of the colour codes.
ERUPTION DETAILS: ERUPTION AT 20171025/0210Z This indicates that an eruption of Mt Ruapehu occurred at 0210 UTC, 25 October 2017.
OBS VA DTG: 25/0233Z Date and time (DTG) the volcanic ash was observed (25th day of the month, 0233 UTC).
OBS VA CLD: SFC/FL210 S3815 E17615 - S3815 E17700 - S3900 E17700 - S3915 E17530 - S3815 E17615 MOV N 5KT Horizontal and vertical extent of the observed ash (as at 0233 UTC, 25th day of the month). Vertical extent - between the surface and FL210.
Horizontal extent - the area is defined by a series of latitude and longitude points (degrees and minutes).
The ash is estimated to be moving north at 5 kt.
FCST VA CLD +6 HR: 25/0833Z SFC/FL210 S3730 E17800 - S3815 E17815 - S3900 E17715 - S3915 E17530 - S3730 E17700 - S3730 E17800 A 6 hr forecast of the position of the ash cloud (vertical and horizontal extent) with the date and time of the forecast indicated (25th day of the month at 0833 UTC).
Vertical extent – surface to FL210.
Horizontal extent – the area is defined by a series of latitude and longitude points (degrees and minutes).
FCST VA CLD +12 HR: 25/1433Z SFC/FL210 S3915 E17545 - S3915 E17530 - S3730 E17700 - S3715 E17815 - S3730 E17915 - S3815 E17900 - S3845 E17730 - S3915 E17545 A 12 hr forecast of the position of the ash cloud (vertical and horizontal extent) with the date and time of the forecast indicated (25th day of the month at 1433 UTC).
Vertical extent – surface to FL210.
Horizontal extent – the area is defined by a series of latitude and longitude points (degrees and minutes).
FCST VA CLD +18 HR: 25/2033Z SFC/FL150 S3915 E17545 - S3915 E17530 - S3745 E17730 - S3815 E17815 - S3900 E17745 - S3915 E17545 FL150/210 S3915 E17530 - S3645 E17615 - S3630 E17730 - S3730 E17800 - S3915 E17530 An 18 hr forecast of the position of the ash cloud (vertical and horizontal extent) with the date and time of the forecast indicated (25th day of the month at 2033 UTC).
Vertical extent – surface to FL150. Horizontal extent – the area is defined by a series of latitude and longitude points (degrees and minutes).
An additional layer of ash cloud is also indicated with the vertical extent from FL150 to FL210. The area is defined by a series of latitude and longitude points (degrees and minutes).
RMK: VA PARTIALLY OBSCURED BY MET CLOUD ALONG SOUTHERN BOUNDARY. VA HEIGHT AND FORECAST MOVEMENT BASED ON HIMAWARI-8 IMAGERY, NZPP 25/0000Z SOUNDING AND MODEL
GUIDANCE.
Remark (RMK). This indicates that the volcanic ash (VA) is partially obscured by meteorological (MET) cloud along the southern boundary of the ash cloud. It also notes that the height and forecast movement of the ash cloud is based on;
- imagery from the Himawari-8 weather satellite (operated by Japan);
- the upper air sounding conducted at the Paraparaumu meteorological observatory at 0000 UTC, 25th day of the month; and
- guidance from meteorological models.
NXT ADVISORY: NO LATER THAN 20171025/0843Z= The next (NXT) advisory will be issued no later than 0843 UTC, 25 October, 2017.
The end of message indicator (=) is also shown

Volcanic Ash Graphic (VAG)

A VAG is presented as a 4-panel map displaying volcanic ash observed from an aircraft, satellite image, webcam or other means, as well as the forecast location of the ash at 6, 12 and 18 hours after the time the ash was observed. The ash is displayed in areas (polygons) for up to four different layers, with the top and bottom of each layer included, e.g., SFC/FL100 indicates the layer extends from the surface to FL100. The boundary of the first polygon is depicted with solid lines, the next highest layer by dashed lines, the third layer by dotted lines and the fourth layer by combined dashed and dotted lines.

VAG example

Explanation of the VAG

Top left panel
Depicts observed (OBS) ash at the time and date displayed, eg, 25/0232Z OBS means the ash displayed was observed at 0232 UTC on the 25th day of the month. The vertical extent of the ash is also shown, eg, SFC/FL210 means from the surface to FL210.
Top right panel
Depicts the expected (forecast) location of the ash 6 hours after the time of the observed ash, eg, 25/0833Z FCST means the forecast location of the ash at 0833 UTC on the 25th day of the month. The vertical extent of the ash is also shown, eg, SFC/FL210.
Bottom left panel
Depicts the expected (forecast) location of the ash 12 hours after the time of the observed ash, eg, 25/1433Z FCST means the forecast location of the ash at 1433 UTC on the 25th day of the month. The verical extent of the ash is also shown, eg, SFC/FL210.
Bottom right panel
Depicts the expected (forecast) location of the ash 18 hours after the time of the observed ash, eg, 25/2033Z FCST means the forecast location of the ash at 2033 UTC on the 25th day of the month. Note that two separate layers of ash are displayed. The vertical extent of the two layers is also shown, eg, SFC/FL150 and FL150/210 respectively.

volcano symbol The dot at the bottom of the volcano symbol represents the position of the volcano producing the ash.

The legend box at the bottom of the 4-panel map includes the same information as that provided in the associated text VAA.

Route Forecast

ROFOR VALID 102000/110600          
ROUTE NZRO/NZCH          
ZONE FL100 FL180 FL300 FL340 FL360
NZRO/TM 23006M03 25017M19 25054M45 25065M54 26062M56
TM/MEVAX 24004M03 24017M19 25055M46 25065M54 26063M56
MEVAX/NS 27003M03 24018M19 26060M46 26068M55 26063M57
NS/PEAKS 26006M03 25016M20 26048M48 26062M56 26060M57
PEAKS/YW 25008M03 24015M21 25040M49 26057M56 26055M57
YW/NZCH 25009M04 24015M21 25037M49 26053M56 26052M57

Decode of ROFOR

Code Decode
ROFOR VALID 102000/110600 Route forecast valid from 2000 UTC on the 10th day of the month until 0600 UTC on the 11th day of the month.
ROUTE NZRO/NZCH Route:  Rotorua to Christchurch
ZONE This column lists the route (NZRO/NZCH) from waypoint to waypoint, eg,  NZRO/TM is for that part of the route from Rotorua to waypoint TM.
FL100 FL180 FL300 FL340 FL360 These columns list the forecast winds and temperatures at FL100, FL180, FL300, FL340 and FL360, for each of the zones shown in the “Zone” column.
23006M03 The forecast winds and temperatures are shown in the following format:

  • dd (two characters) (direction true rounded to the nearest 10 degrees)
  • fff (three characters)(wind speed in knots)
  • S (one character) (sign of the temperature: M = minus P = plus)
  • TT (two characters) (temperature in degrees Celsius)
  • eg, in the Zone NZRO/TM, for FL100, the wind direction is 230 degrees true, wind speed 6 knots and temperature minus 3 degrees Celsius.
Note: The winds and temperatures represent the average values for the zone concerned, eg, for the zone NZRO/TM, the winds and temperatures are the average between NZRO and TM. They are not the winds at NZRO and TM.

Hi-Level SIGWX Chart

Medium (Mid) SIGWX Chart

Wind and Temperature (WIND/TEMP) Chart for FL340

Satellite Picture (SATPX)

RAPIC (Weather Radar Picture) - New Plymouth Radar

Return to Meteorology homepage

Notes about METAR AUTO Reports.