NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration

What is Common Data Format (CDF)?

  • Self-describing data format for the storage of scalar and multidimensional data in a platform- and discipline-independent way
  • Scientific data management package (CDF Library) allows application developers to manage these data arrays
  • Transparent access to data and metadata through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)
  • Built-in support for data compression (RLE, gZIP, Huffman) and automatic data uncompression
  • Large file support (> 2GBytes)
  • CDF library includes a suite of tools that allow users to manipulate CDF files
  • More Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQ)

[Download the latest operational version (V3.4.1)]

Please email with any CDF-related questions (both technical and policy-related).

Example external CDF visualization tool: Autoplot interactive browser