NOAA/National Centers for Environmental Information


In general most data sets viewed in the toolkit can be animated (as long as there is more than one file for a time series). Data Services can also be animated but the process is different that what will be covered in this tutorial and you should consult the individual data service tutorial for how animations are controlled.

This tutorial covers animating radar and satellite data also covered are some of the tools used by Data Services.

There are two methods of animating in the toolkit: Animation Generator and Screen Capture ("stop animation").

Animation Generator:

Creating an animation using the Animation Generator is done by selecting multiple files in the Data Selector (review the tutorial about the Data Selector) To select multiple files in the Data Selector, hold the control or shift keys and click the individual or range of files.

Once this has been done click Animate and the Animation Window will pop up.

Animation Wizard

The Animation Wizard has four options:

This animated GIF file was created using the Export Movie feature.

Animated GIF Example

When you select the Load button in the Animation Generator, the selected files are loaded into the Animation Window.

Animation Window

The Animation Window has seven sets of controls.

Animation Window Controls

Each controls the following:

The second way to create an animation is by animating multiple Screen Captures also known as stop animation.

To take a screen capture, click Capture in the Right Side Bar or click Tools then click Screen Capture (CTRL-Z also works). Once you have taken several screen captures and would like to create an animation, click Tools then click Capture Animation. The Capture Animation window will then pop up.

Capture Animation Window

Once this window comes up a list of the screen captures you have taken will appear. Select multiple files to animate by holding the control or shift keys and left clicking to select individual or a range of files respectively.

When you have the captures you want to animate selected click Load. This will load all the images into the Animation Window. Scroll back up the page to review how to use the Animation Window.

Below is a screen capture animation created by taking all the Level-III reflectivity screen captures every hour for 12 hours.

Screen Capture Animation Example