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Raster MTS Supported File Formats

The Raster MTS tool supports 3 different file types: GeoTIFF, GRIB, and NetCDF.


NetCDF or Network Common Data Form is a self-describing file format that can contain multi-dimensional raster data. This format is commonly used to store weather related data.

There are a couple useful utilities for inspecting NetCDF files including gdalinfo and ncdump.

Using ncdump we can inspect the variables and dimensions of a file. Adding the -h flag below will return the header data of the file. Below are some examples of using ncdump and gdalinfo on some sample data from Japan Meteorological Agency.

ncdump -h

Truncated output from running ncdump on the above file.

netcdf NC_H09_20170308_0230_B01_JP02_R10 {
latitude = 2701 ;
longitude = 3301 ;
start_time = 1 ;
end_time = 1 ;
float latitude(latitude) ;
latitude:units = "degrees_north" ;
latitude:long_name = "latitude" ;
float longitude(longitude) ;
longitude:units = "degrees_east" ;
longitude:long_name = "longitude" ;
float albedo(latitude, longitude) ;
albedo:units = "1" ;
albedo:long_name = "reflectivity" ;
albedo:_FillValue = -1.f ;

Using this information, we can decide what variable we might want to dig deeper into using gdalinfo. When opening a NetCDF file with gdalinfo, you'll want to specify the NetCDF driver as well as the variable that you want to access. The driver is necessary as gdalinfo might open the NetCDF file using the wrong driver if the filename is missing an extension. The variable allows gdalinfo to provide the bands for that specific variable. You can find more information on how to use gdal with NetCDF files in their official documentation.

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