METAR Data Access
Current and recent METAR reports from around the world are available from the NWS either through this presentation or via anonymous FTP at
ftp://tgftp.nws.noaa.gov/data/observations/metar. METAR observations are
available as individual reports or in cycle files. The information available here is represented in
a meteorological code ,
however, extensive information is available about the
METAR Code furnished by NESDIS.
To display the most recent METAR report for one ore more observing locations, enter the four-character ICAO
Location Indicators in the field below, separated by one or more blanks.
Enter one or more four-character ICAO Location Indicators below.
Make sure to enter one or more spaces between each indicator:
Hourly files containing METAR reports
are available here and via
FTP from weather.noaa.gov in the /data/observations/metar/cycles directory.
Files are named hhZ.TXT where hh is the cycle hour of all the METAR reports
found in that file. (See the METAR Cycle discussion below.)
All reports received are placed in
these files as they are received. The files are updated approximately every
five minutes as data becomes available. Reports may be duplicated within the
files and multiple reports received from a station may appear in a file. SPECI
reports are also included in the file.
Cycle files are deleted ten minutes
before the start of cycle, for example, the file 15Z.TXT will be deleted at
1435Z in preparation for receipt of new data. This means that data up to 23
hours old is available.
Each cycle file contains multiple reports in the following format:
observation time is the extrapolated time of the observation in the form
report is the METAR observation spanning one or more lines.
The end of the report is delimited by a blank line.
Data files are available for the past 4 observing cycles and are identified by cycle.
The current time is
therefore the METAR observing cycle is
The current cycle file may be unavailable or incomplete until the end of the cycle.
A Discussion of METAR Cycles
In the U.S., METAR reports are taken once an hour between 50 minutes past the hour and
the top of the (next) hour. All the observations taken within this time are considered to be for the same
cycle. For example, observations taken between 1150Z and 1200Z are all
considered to be 12Z observations. In reality, observations may be taken a
little earlier or a little later. In addition, observations taken due to
changing conditions, known as SPECI reports, are also considered to occur for a
given cycle. Our rule of thumb is that all reports taken between
(hh-1)45Z to hh44Z are considered to be for the hh cycle.
The following table summarizes the relationship between observation time and cycle type:
Please note that outside of the
U.S., METAR observations may be taken on different schedules. For our purposes,
we include non-U.S. observations within the same file structure.