naught101 naught101 - 28 days ago 4x
R Question

Format date-time as seasons in R?

In R, it's possible to format POSIXlt date-time objects as a month:

format(Sys.time(), format='%Y-%m')

Is there a way to do the same thing with seasons, or 3-month groups (DJF, MAM, JJA, SON)? These divisions are really common in climatological and ecological science, and it would be great to have a neat way to format them quickly like with months. Obviously DJF falls over 2 years, but for the purposes or this question, that doesn't really matter - just consistently shove them into either year, (or, ideally, it would be good to be able to specify which year they go into).

I'm using the output as a index for
, so the output format doesn't matter much, just as long as each year/season is unique.

Edit: example data:

dates <- Sys.Date()+seq(1,380, by=35)
dates <- structure(c(16277, 16312, 16347, 16382, 16417, 16452, 16487,
16522, 16557, 16592, 16627), class = "Date")
#[1] "2014-07-26" "2014-08-30" "2014-10-04" "2014-11-08" "2014-12-13"
# "2015-01-17" "2015-02-21" "2015-03-28" "2015-05-02" "2015-06-06" "2015-07-11"

should result in:

c("2014-JJA", "2014-JJA", "2014-SON", "2014-SON", "2015-DJF", "2015-DJF",
"2015-DJF", "2015-MAM", "2015-MAM", "2015-JJA", "2015-JJA")

But the "2015-DJF"s could also be "2014-DJF". Also, the form of the output doesn't matter - "2104q4 or 201404 would also be fine.

42- 42-

as.POSIXlt returns a named list (which makes it unsuitable for data.frame columns). The list columns can be individually accessed and include "year" (1900-based, unlike 1970 used for default) and "mon" (0-based). Best place to see this list in hte help system is ?DateTimeClasses:

First just a Seasons calculation, then a Year-Seasons calculation

 c('DJF', 'MAM', 'JJA', 'SON')[ # select from character vector with numeric vector
          1+((as.POSIXlt(dates)$mon+1) %/% 3)%%4]

 [1] "JJA" "JJA" "SON" "SON" "DJF" "DJF" "DJF" "MAM" "MAM" "JJA"
[11] "JJA"

   paste( 1900 + # this is the base year for POSIXlt year numbering 
             as.POSIXlt( dates )$year + 
             1*(as.POSIXlt( dates )$year==12) ,   # offset needed for December
          c('DJF', 'MAM', 'JJA', 'SON')[          # indexing from 0-based-mon
                             1+((as.POSIXlt(dates)$mon+1) %/% 3)%%4] 
          , sep="-")
 [1] "2014-JJA" "2014-JJA" "2014-SON" "2014-SON" "2014-DJF"
 [6] "2015-DJF" "2015-DJF" "2015-MAM" "2015-MAM" "2015-JJA"
[11] "2015-JJA"

Shouldn't be that difficult to make a function that constructs the formatting you expect. This is just modulo arithmetic on the POSIXlt values for month and year.