The Military Date Time Group (DTG) format is used in everything from operations orders to airlifts, and it is essential for every service member to know how to put together a Date Time Group (DTG) format correctly.
How to write a DTG format?
Often referred to as army or military date format, the Date Time Group is traditionally formatted as DDHHMM(Z)MONYY
An example is 630pm on January 6th, 2012 in Fayetteville NC would read 061830RJAN12
DD-Day of the month (e.g. January 6th=06)
HHMM- Time in 24 hr format +military time zone (e.g. 6:30pm in =1830).
Z- Military identifier- see below for a complete list
MON- 3 digit month code, (e.g. January= JAN)
YY- 2 Digit year, (e.g. 2012= 12)
Military Time Code
The military time zone is used as a representation to Coordinate Universal Time (UTC) which is based on hours + or – Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) which is considered hour 0.
In military time code reference, Greenwich Mean time is referred to as Zulu (Z). In operations spanning multiple time zones, Zulu will be used to give all operating units a time zone to adjust their time to so that everyone is on the same page.
One common mistake when using the military time code is to use “L” as Local time. In fact “L” is used to represent the time code for UTC+11 which covers parts of Russia and Australia. When referring to your time zone be sure to see what your local code identifier is by using the reference below.
Military Time Code Letter Reference:
- UTC -12: Y- (e.g. Fiji)
- UTC-11: X (American Samoa)
- UTC-10: W (Honolulu, HI)
- UTC-9: V (Juneau, AK)
- UTC-8: U (PST, Los Angeles, CA)
- UTC-7: T (MST, Denver, CO)
- UTC-6: S (CST, Dallas, TX)
- UTC-5: R (EST, New York, NY)
- UTC-4: Q (Halifax, Nova Scotia
- UTC-3: P (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
- UTC-2: O (Godthab, Greenland)
- UTC-1: N (Azores)
- UTC+-0: Z (Zulu time)
- UTC+1: A (France)
- UTC+2: B (Athens, Greece)
- UTC+3: C (Arab Standard Time, Iraq, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Qatar)
- UTC+4: D (Used for Moscow, Russia and Afghanistan, however, Afghanistan is technically +4:30 from UTC)
- UTC+5: E (Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan)
- UTC+6: F (Bangladesh)
- UTC+7: G (Thailand)
- UTC+8: H (Beijing, China)
- UTC+9: I (Tokyo, Australia)
- UTC+10: K (Brisbane, Australia)
- UTC+11: L (Sydney, Australia)
- UTC+12: M (Wellington, New Zealand)
Military time format
Military time format makes reading and writing of time lot easier and more compatible for communication which is desirable for military use. It works on a 24- hour clock that starts at midnight which is referred to as 0000 hours, which means that 1:00 a.m. is now being 0100 hours, 2:00 a.m. being 0200 hours, etc. all the way to 11:00 p.m. being 2300 hours.
Military time format in fact is written with four digits, two for the hours and two for the minutes. Seconds are not normally used.
The most notable difference between regular and military time format is the manner in which hours are expressed.