Weather Products List

Weather

NWS – National Weather Service

AWC – Aviation Weather Center

TAF – Terminal Aerodrome Forecast

SIGMET – Significant Meteorological Information

AIRMET – Airmen’s Meteorological Information

PIREP – Pilot Report

NAVAID – Navigational Aids

ACARS – Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System

AMDAR – Aircraft Meteorological Data Relay

METAR – Meterological Aerodrome Reports

IMC – Instrument Meterological Conditions

VOLMET – Meteorological information for aircraft in flight

MOS – Model Output Statistics

Prog Charts – Prognostic Charts

SIGWX – Significant weather Chart

SPC – Storm Prediction Center

TCF – Traffic Flow Management Convective Forecast

ECFP – Extended Convective Forecast

ECFP – Extended Convective Forecast

Graphical representation of the probability of thunderstorms that are likely to occur in the US over the next 72 hours.

TCF – Traffic Flow Management Convective Forecast

Graphical representation of forecasted convection meeting specific coverage. Image format.

SPC – Storm Prediction Center

Government agency that forecasts risk of severe thunderstorms and tornadoes. Current and 8 day outlook based on models and discussions.

Prog Charts – Prognostic Charts

Map displaying the likely weather forecast for the future. These are atmospheric models as output from numerical weather prediction and contain information such as:

    • temperature
    • wind
    • precipitation
    • weather fronts
    • Recent
    • 6 hr
    • 12 hr
    • 18 hr
    • 24 hr
    • 30 hr
    • 36 hr
    • 48 hr
    • 60 hr
    • day 3
    • day 4
    • day 5
    • day 6
    • day 7

SIGWX – Significant Weather Chart

  • Issued by World Area Forecast Centers
  • Most important meteorological phenomena relevant to air transportation
  • In PNG image format
  • Typically issued every 6 hours
  • Typically for 2 height ranges
  • includes the following weather phenomena
    • Cloud (type, height of base and top, turbulence, icing risk)
    • Clear Air Turbulence (base and top height, strength of turbulence)
    • Jet Stream (base and top height, wind speed)
    • Tropopause (the interface between the troposphere and the stratosphere) height
    • Tropical Cyclone, Sandstorm
    • Volcanoes
    • Frontal System

 

METAR – Meterological Aerodrome Reports 

Current – Hourly or when significant weather changes within the Hour.

Aviation routine weather reports used by aircraft pilots and meteorologists. Contains data for temperature, dew point, wind direction and speed, precipitation, cloud cover and height, visibility, barometric pressure. 

TAF – Terminal Aerodrome Forecast 

Future – Weather forecast for a short distance around an airport. Generated by a forecast based on weather observations.

Expected meteorological conditions at an airport during a specified period (usually 24 hours)

METAR and TAF Abbreviations

Weather Identifiers

  • B – Began
  • BC – Patches
  • BL – Blowing
  • BR – Mist
  • DR – Low Drifting
  • DS – Dust Storm
  • DU – Dust
  • DZ – Drizzle
  • E – Ended
  • FC, +FC – Funnel Cloud, Well Developed Funnel Cloud (Tornado or Waterspout)
  • FG – Fog
  • FU – Smoke
  • FZ – Freezing
  • GR – Hail(>5mm)
  • GS – Small Hail/Snow Pellets (<5mm)
  • HZ – Haze
  • IC – Ice Crystals
  • MI – Shallow
  • PL – Ice Pellets
  • PO – Well Developed Dust/ Sand Swirls
  • PR – Partial
  • PY – Spray
  • RA – Rain
  • SA – Sand
  • SG – Snow Grains
  • SH – Showers
  • SN – Snow
  • SQ – Squalls Moderate
  • SS – Sand Storm
  • TS – Thunderstorm
  • UP – unknown Precipitation
  • VA – Volcanic Ash
  • VC – In the Vicinity

Modifiers

  • – = Light
  • + = Heavy
  • P = More than
  • M = Less than
  • B = Began
  • E = Ended

Sky Conditions

  • BKN – Broken Cloud Layer
  • CB – Cumulonimbus
  • CLR – Sky Clear at or Below 12,000 AGL
  • Few – Few Cloud layer
  • OVC – Overcast Cloud Layer
  • SCT – Scattered Cloud layer
  • SKC – Sky Clear
  • TCU – Towering Cumulus

SIGMET – Significant Meteorological Information 

    • Significant/Severe weather that may affect the safety of all Aircraft.
    • Issued as needed
    • Valid up to 4 hours
    • SIGMET for hurricanes and volcanic ash outside the CONUS valid up to 6 hours.

Convective SIGMET – Convection (temperature difference) over the United States  for

    • an area of embedded thunderstorms,
    • line of thunderstorms
    • thunderstorms greater than or equal to VIP level 4 or more affecting an area of at least 3,000 square miles,
    • Severe Thunderstorms (severe surface weather )
      • surface winds greater than or equal to 50 KTS
      • hail at the surface at least 3/4″ in diameter
      • tornadoes
    • Valid for 2 hours
    • Issued Hourly +55

Non Convective SIGMET  – not associated with thunderstorms

    • severe or greater turbulence over a 3,000 mile square area
    • severe or greater icing over a 3,000 mile area
    • IMC over a 3,000 square mile area due to
      • dust
      • sand
      • volcanic ash
    • broadcast on ATIS at ATC facilities and over VOLMET stations

Airmet

  • Less Severe Weather
  • weather that is occurring or may occur along an air route.
  • Broadcast on ATIS at ATC facilities.
  • Weather advisories

 

    • Airmet Sierra – Mountain Obscuration / IFR
    • Airmet Tango – Turbulence
    • Airmet Zulu – Icing

MOS – Model Output Statistics 

Statistical post-processing technique of modeling weather forecasts.

MOS Products

    • Station Based MOS
    • LAMP – Localized Aviation MOS Program
    • GMOS – Gridded MOS
    • GLMP – Gridded LAMP
    • EKDMOS – Ensemble Kernel Density MOS

 

NWS Hazard & Codes

    • Tornado – TO
    • Severe Thunderstorm – TS
    • Gale – GA
    • High Wind – HW
    • Lake Wind – LW
    • Wind – WN
    • Winter Weather – WW
    • Winter Storm – WS
    • Blizzard – BZ
    • Ice Storm – IS
    • Storm – ST
    • Freezing Rain – ZR
    • Lake Effect Snow – LS
    • Blowing Dust -BD
    • Small Craft for Winds – SCW
    • Dense Fog – DF
    • Freezing Fog – ZF
    • Marine Dense Fog – MDF

 

AWC Sigmet Codes

    • Convective – C-SIG
    • Tropical Cyclone – TC
    • International Thunderstorm – TS
    • Volcanic Ash – VA
    • Blowing Dust/Sand – IFR
    • Turbulence – TB
    • Icing – IC

TAF – Terminal Aerodrome Forecast 

Expected meteorological conditions at an airport during a specified period (usually 24 hours)

PIREP

Mandatory PIREP

    • UA / UUA – Identification of the PIREP
      • UA – non hazardous weather information
      • UUA – tornado, funnel cloud, waterspout, severe turbulence, severe icing, hail, low level wind sheer
    • OV – Location of the PIREP in relation to a NAVAID
    • TM – Time PIREP was received from the Pilot
    • FL – Flight level/altitude above sea level (essential for turbulence and icing)
    • TP – aircraft type (essential for turbulence and icing)

Optional PIREP (at least one)

    • SK – Sky Cover
    • TA – Ambient temperature
    • WV – Wind vector (true north or magnetic north)
    • TB – Turbulence: intensity and whether it occurred in or near clouds and duration
    • IC – Icing
    • RM – Remarks
    • WX – Flight visibility and weather

NAVAID – Navigational Aids

Electronic NAVAIDS

    • ARSR  – Air Route Surveillance Radar
    • Airport Surveillance Radar (ARS)
    • DME – Distance Measuring Equipment
      • frequency paired with
        • LOC
        • MLSAZ
        • NDB
        • VOR
    • FM – Fan marker
    • LOC – Localizer
    • GS – Glide Slope
    • IM – Inner Marker
    • MM – Middle Marker
    • OM – Outer Marker
    • BCM – Back Course Market
    • LDA – Localizer Type Directional Aid
    • MLSAZ – MLS Azimuth Guidance
    • MLSEL – MLS Elevation Guidance
    • NDB – Nondirectional Beacon
    • SDF – Simplified Directional Facility
    • TACAN – Tactical Air Navigation
    • VOR – VHF Omnidirectional Range
    • VOR/TACAN – (VORTAC)

Visual NAVAIDS

  • Airport Beacon
  • Visual Glide Slope Indicators
  • REIL
  • Approach Lights

VIP – Video Integrator and Processor, which contours radar reflectivity (in dBZ) into six VIP levels:

    • VIP 1 (Level 1, 18-30 dBZ) – Light precipitation.
    • VIP 2 (Level 2, 30-38 dBZ) – Light to moderate rain.
    • VIP 3 (Level 3, 38-44 dBZ) – Moderate to heavy rain.
    • VIP 4 (Level 4, 44-50 dBZ) – Heavy rain.
    • VIP 5 (Level 5, 50-57 dBZ) – Very heavy rain; hail possible.
    • VIP 6 (Level 6, >57 dBZ) – Very heavy rain and hail; large hail possible.

 

VOLMET – Meteorological information for aircraft in flight

Worldwide network of radio stations that broadcast TAF, SIGMET and METAR reports on shortwave frequencies and in some countries VHF.

IMC – Instrument Meterological Conditions

Weather conditions that require pilots to fly primarily by reference to instruments and under instrument flight rules (IFR). Cloudy or bad weather.

https://products.weather.gov/PDD/PDD_GFA_2017.pdf