This page provides basic documentation for the alert stream data formats deployed by the Zwicky Transient Facility.
The alerts are formatted as Apache Avro. Avro is an open-source structured data serialization format that uses schemas to validate and enforce data types and contents. Avro client libraries are available for many major programming languages. For Python 3, the
avro-python3 library can be obtained with
pip install avro-python3. Better performance may be obtained with the
fastavro library, available with
pip install fastavro.
The Schema page provides a human-readable guide to the alert fields.
Suggested filters are available to increase the purity of the stream.
The ZTF Avro schemas may be seen here.
Sample alert packets are here.