Skip to main content

A python module to access binary data files generated by Teledyne WebbResearch gliders

Project description

PyPI version Docs badge License


Change log

Version 0.4.7

  • Bug fix for reading dbd files on Windows.

Version 0.4.6

  • Added get_CTD_sync, a convenience method to retrieve CTD data, and other parameters mapped on the CTD time stamps. Also ensures time stamps are monotonically increasing.
  • Adds bounds to what values of latitude and longitude are considered valid.

Version 0.4.5

  • dbdreader now ignores the first line of data in each binary file
  • dbdreader checks whether the value of the parameters read are finite, ignoring them if they are not.


Slocum ocean gliders are autonomous underwater vehicles, used for making oceanographic measurements. The data that these devices and their sensors collect, are stored in binary data files. The python module dbdreader provides the utilities to extract the data from the binary files, so that they can be further analysed.


The python module dbdreader can be installed from source, using the standard method to install python code. Note that this method requires an C-extension to be build. (The actual reading from files is done in C for speed.) In order to build the extension successfully, you would need a C-compiler. On Linux, this can be gcc, with supporting development/header files for python. On Fedora you would do sudo dnf install python3-devel.

Alternatively, dbdreader can also be installed from PyPi, using pip3 install dbdreader.


Comprehensive documentation is provided at


For the impatient…

The dbdreader module implements a class DBD() which provides the machinery to read a single dbd file. The most commonly used methods are:

  • get(parametername)
  • get_sync(parametername, list_of_other_parameternames)

The first method returs a tuple with time and values for requested parameter. The second method, returns a tuple with time and values of the first parameter requested, and of all further listed parameters, all interpolated on the time base of the first parameter.

Mostly, it is not one file that is required to be processed, but a number of them. This interface is implemented by the MultiDBD class. Files can either be specified as a list of filenames, or as a pattern using wildcards.


To read a single file:

>>> dbd = DBD("00010010.dbd")
>>> t, pitch = dbd.get("m_pitch")
>>> t, hdg, ptch, roll = dbd.get_sync("m_heading", "m_pitch", "m_roll)

Or, doing the same, but using both dbd and ebd files:

>>> dbd = DBD(pattern="00010010.[de]bd")
>>> t, pitch = dbd.get("m_pitch")
>>> t, hdg, ptch, roll = dbd.get_sync("m_heading", "m_pitch", "m_roll")
>>> t, p_ctd, p_nav = dbd.get_sync("sci_water_pressure", "m_water_pressure")

Python 2

Python 2.7 is not supported anymore. However, you should be able to make the code able to run on python2.7 using the future package.

  • pip install future
  • pasteurize dbdreader.

For details see

Project details

Download files

Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.

Files for dbdreader, version 0.4.7
Filename, size File type Python version Upload date Hashes
Filename, size dbdreader-0.4.7-cp39-cp39-win_amd64.whl (47.2 kB) File type Wheel Python version cp39 Upload date Hashes View
Filename, size dbdreader-0.4.7.tar.gz (534.4 kB) File type Source Python version None Upload date Hashes View

Supported by

AWS AWS Cloud computing Datadog Datadog Monitoring DigiCert DigiCert EV certificate Facebook / Instagram Facebook / Instagram PSF Sponsor Fastly Fastly CDN Google Google Object Storage and Download Analytics Microsoft Microsoft PSF Sponsor Pingdom Pingdom Monitoring Salesforce Salesforce PSF Sponsor Sentry Sentry Error logging StatusPage StatusPage Status page