In recent years studies have provided a physical or meteorological interpretation of many echo types observed by surface-based remote sensors. The proliferation of remote sensors that continuously monitor the structure of the planetary boundary layer has generated a need to relate or convey the basic structural information in a concise, compact manner. Photographic reproductions, which have been the principal mode of conveyance, are time-consuming to construct and relay the information many days after the observation. In anticipation of the time when remote sensors become common at reporting meteorological stations, a coding technique was developed to convey concisely the basic features of the atmospheric structure revealed by remote sensors. The technique appears to be applicable to many sensors and to a large number of boundary layer echo structures. The code consists of a five block format: the first four blocks convey layered and nonlayered structure information by letter designators; the last block contains digital height information. This paper presents the coding technique, some letter designators, the rationale for the format, coding examples, coding difficulties, and some of its potential uses.

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1Formerly Naval Electronics Laboratory Center.