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Aviation Weather Report (METAR/SPECI)

METAR is an aviation routine weather report issued at hourly or half-hourly intervals. It is a description of the meteorological elements observed at an airport at a specific time.

SPECI is an aviation special weather report issued when there is significant deterioration or improvement in airport weather conditions, such as significant changes of surface winds, visibility, cloud base height and occurrence of severe weather. The format of the SPECI report is similar to that of the METAR and the elements used have the same meaning. The identifier METAR or SPECI at the beginning of the weather report differentiates them.

The aviation weather report also includes a section containing the trend forecast, which indicates the forecast change in meteorological conditions in the next two hours.

The latest aviation weather report at the Hong Kong International Airport issued by the Hong Kong Observatory at 20:00 HKT on 05 May 16

METAR VHHH 051200Z 20009KT 160V240 9999 FEW009 SCT028 30/24 Q1009 NOSIG=

Decoded METAR/SPECI in plain language:-

Aviation weather report (METAR) at 1200 UTC on 05 May 2016 issued by the Hong Kong Observatory :

Wind Visibility Weather Cloud Amount Cloud Base Temperature Dew Point Pressure (QNH)
9 knots from 200 degrees (SSW), variability: 160-240 degrees
10 km or above
No significant weather
1 to 2 oktas
3 to 4 oktas
900 feet
2800 feet
30 oC
24 oC
1009 hPa

Next Two Hours Change
No Significant Change

Visibility: As a result of an amendment by the International Civil Aviation Organization starting from 1 November 2001, the night-time visibility for aviation purpose represents the greatest distance at which light in the vicinity of 1 000 candelas can be seen and identified against an unlit background.  As it is made specifically for aviation purpose, it may occasionally differ from the night-time visibility for general purpose which represents the degree of atmospheric transparency and is independent of the intensity of lights being observed.
okta(s): the international unit for reporting cloud amount. Cloud amount is assessed in total which is the estimated total apparent area of the sky covered with cloud.
  1 okta is one-eighth of sky covered with cloud. 0 okta = sky clear, 1-2 oktas = few, 3-4 oktas = scattered, 5-7 oktas = broken and 8 oktas = overcast.
QNH: the pressure value measured at airport with adjustment made to suit aeronautical use.
To know more about the METAR/SPECI code, please see Decoding METAR/SPECI.
To know more about clouds, please see Commonly observed clouds in Hong Kong.
To know more about common weather instruments, please see How weather elements are measured
Aviation Weather Forecast Information for Hong Kong International Airport Weather Forecast for Local Aviation
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