Regarding automated reports (AWOS & ASOS), is the wind direction consistently reported in TRUE or MAGNETIC?
I usually go by “If you read it, it’s true. If you hear it, it’s magnetic”. However, these automated reports can be disseminated both ways. Either via a computer-generated voice message broadcast over a radio frequency, or via ground data link in METAR format.
Recently, I read that AWOS and ASOS winds transmitted locally by radio are in magnetic direction, but are given in true direction when used as part of the METAR format???
If there’s any truth to that statement, can you explain how that happens? It would seem that they are calibrated for either one or the other?
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