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stringtofloat

Coerces values of type string to values of type float.

Prototype

	function stringtofloat (
		string_val  : string   
	)

	return_val [dimsizes(string_val)] :  float

Arguments

string_val

A string variable of any dimensionality. The strings in this variable must be ASCII representations of numeric values, such as "123", "1.23e5", "12.55E+15", "1.3455", and so forth. If a conversion from a string to a float value is not possible, an error is issued. NCL tries hard to make sense out of some strings that may not really represent a number - in a given string it looks for the maximum number of initial characters that make sense as a numeric value and ignores the rest. For example it would interpret the string "3.4etothefifth" as the value 3.4 and "2.9d+3" as 2.9 . Note in particular that NCL does not object to "2.9d+3" since it is not treating it as a double precision constant, it is ignoring the "d+3".

Return value

Returns an array of floats. The return variable is of the same dimensionality as the input variable.

Description

This function takes strings that are ASCII representations of numeric values and converts them to floats.

This function performs coercion that is not automatically available through the NCL grammar. See the section on coercion of types for details on NCL's automatic type conversions.

Attributes, with the exception of _FillValue, are not propagated by the conversion functions. See Example 2 below.

Special considerations apply to how missing values are handled in the conversion functions. See Example 2 below for illustrations.

See Also

stringtodouble, stringtointeger, stringtoshort, stringtolong, flt2string

Examples

Example 1

Convert various strings to float values.


begin
  a = (/ "1", "2.14159", "2.71828E+2", "4e4", "3junk", "33.3d+1" /)
  b = stringtofloat(a)
  print(b)
end

Example 2

Shows how some missing values are handled.


begin
;
;  Conversion does not preserve attributes, except missing value.
;  A string missing value is converted to a float
;  number, if that is possible, and used as the missing value
;  for the target variable.
;
  a = "1.23"
  a@T = "string"
  a@_FillValue = "4.56"
  b = stringtofloat(a)
  print (b)
  delete(a)
  delete(b)
;
;  If the target variable has no missing value
;  specified and the original variable does, the missing 
;  value of the target string is the missing value
;  of the original string.
;
  a = (/"1.23","4.56","7.89"/)
  a@_FillValue = "4.56"
  b = stringtofloat(a)
  print (b)
  delete(a)
  delete(b)
;
;  If the target variable has a missing
;  value specified and the original variable
;  has a missing value specified, the missing
;  value of the target variable is retained
;  even when the missing value of the original 
;  variable is convertible to a float.
;  Missing values in the original variable are 
;  converted to the missing value of the target variable.
;
  a = (/"1.23","4.56","8.99"/)
  a@_FillValue = "4.56"
  b = new(3,float,7.89)
  b = stringtofloat(a)
  print (b)
  delete(a)
  delete(b)
;
;  If missing value of the original variable
;  ("missing" in most circumstances) is not
;  convertible to a float, then the missing
;  value for the target variable will obtain.
;  Missing values in the original variable are 
;  converted to the missing value of the target 
;  variable.
;
  a = (/"1.23","4.56","XXX"/)
  a@_FillValue = "XXX"
  b = stringtofloat(a)
  print (b)
end

Errors

If NCL cannot make sense of an input string as a numeric value, an error is issued.