In a British dictionary, I found the... | Almanac.com

In a British dictionary, I found the...

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In a British dictionary, I found the word okta, used to express cloud cover. Is this an American meteorological term as well?
The term okta is not widely used by American meteorologists. It is an older, worldwide standard used to describe how much of the sky is obscured by clouds. An okta is a unit of eight, so one okta would indicate that about one-eighth of the sky was covered. In the United States, weather forecasters describe the sky using the following abbreviations: SKC — sky clear, no oktas; FEW — few clouds, less than 1 to 2 oktas; SCT — scattered clouds, 3 to 4 oktas; BKN — broken clouds, 5 to 7 oktas; and OVC — overcast, 8 oktas. Pilots use the okta terminology when they are taking off and landing at international airports, but you won’t hear your local TV weather forecaster use it. Instead, he or she will use descriptive terms such as partly sunny, partly cloudy, mostly cloudy, and mostly sunny.

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