Description of software

IDL-based software used to convert netcdf field files into stamp plots. The output can be in the form of time-series of

  1. actual fields,
  2. accumulated fields, or of
  3. probability values,
Note that currently, (2) and (3) are only applicable to precipitation fields.

Location of source code

The IDL source code can be found at /home/h05/frbr/idl_source_code/

The code uses library routines written by Andy Heaps (NCAS, University of Reading) and these are accesssed by adding these two lines into your .profile file:

export IDL_PATH=+/usr/local/itt
. /data/nwp1/frbr/TIDLWorkspace/andy_lib/

Method of use - interactive usage

In the absence of a file called stampplot_controlfile in the working directory the user must supply information interactively as follows:

  1. A valid field code for the data under investigation; one of:
    00002 - Westerly component of wind
    00003 - Southerly component of wind
    00004 - Potential temperature
    00010 - Specific humidity
    03236 - 1.5m temperature
    04203 - Dynamic rainfall rate (the default)
    16222 - Pressure
  2. The level of the data to be plotted (refers to the level of the data in any incoming netcdf file - an integer value).
  3. The directory of the input data file.
  4. Substrings to create the data filename, assumed to be FFFFF_XXXmmYYY where FFFFF if the field code number XXX may be of the form _ppn_qwq114.oper (the default) mm is the member number (00 to 23) and YYY may be of the form
  5. Specify the type of plot; actual (normal) field (N), accumulated (A) or probability (P)
  6. The time interval between frames (to compute accumulated fields)

Method of use - batch mode

  1. The user should make a copy of the IDL source code in his/her working directory.
  2. Next, create a text file called stampplot_controlfile in the working directory. This file should contain the following:
    111                                             ; start cycle
    111                                             ; end cycle
    00004                                           ; met field to process
    17                                               ; model level chosen
    /home/mm0200/apis/data/ETKF/tmp/                                   ; data file directory
    _perts.qwq111.oper     ; XXX ; typical filename FFFFF_XXXmmYYY, where FFFFF=stash no,                ; YYY ; and mm is the member number (00 to 23)
    N                                               ; plot type (A or N or P)
    where the records have been changed to reflect the input data and output requirements of the user. The text to the right of the ';' symbols can be kept as a reminder of the meaning of the data records.
  3. The idl code can now been run in a batch job or, if run interactively, will loop through the specified cycles.

It is important that the user has some knowledge of the contents of the netcdf input files to be processed. Thus, if output level 17 is specified for a single level field, then the job will stop.

Example output

The figure shows 1.5m temperature model results from a control run (bottom left) and 23 ensemble members.

Current code developments

Since the output postscript files currently produced by the program are large the possibility of outputting jpg files (as shown in the example image) is also being investigated. In the meantime, use 'convert' to convert the postcript files to jpeg, and then delete the postscript files.