List of military time zones

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This is a list of military time zones as defined in the ACP 121(I) standard.[1] for Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States, and is used by many nations' armed forces. The names are identical to the NATO phonetic alphabet.

Going east from the prime meridian at Greenwich, letters "Alpha" through "Mike" (skipping "J", see below) represent the 12 time zones with positive UTC offsets until reaching the international Date Line. Going west from Greenwich, letters "November" through "Yankee" represent zones with negative offsets.

The letters are typically used in conjunction with military time. For example, 6:00 a.m. in zone UTC−5 is written "0600R" and spoken "oh six hundred Romeo".

Time zone name Designation letter Offset
Alfa Time Zone A +1
Bravo Time Zone B +2
Charlie Time Zone C +3
Delta Time Zone D +4
Echo Time Zone E +5
Foxtrot Time Zone F +6
Golf Time Zone G +7
Hotel Time Zone H +8
India Time Zone I +9
Kilo Time Zone K +10
Lima Time Zone L +11
Mike Time Zone M +12
November Time Zone N −1
Oscar Time Zone O −2
Papa Time Zone P −3
Quebec Time Zone Q −4
Romeo Time Zone R −5
Sierra Time Zone S −6
Tango Time Zone T −7
Uniform Time Zone U −8
Victor Time Zone V −9
Whiskey Time Zone W −10
X-ray Time Zone X −11
Yankee Time Zone Y −12
Zulu Time Zone Z 0

The system apparently originates from Nathaniel Bowditch's 1802 American Practical Navigator book,[citation needed] where time zones were labelled with letters and "J" was skipped[2] to avoid confusion with "I"[citation needed].

The letter "J" ("Juliett"), originally skipped, may be used to indicate the observer's local time.[3]

The letter "L" ("Lima") is commonly mistaken for "local".[4]

The letter "Z" ("Zulu") indicates Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Combined Communications-Electronics Board (Oct 2010). ACP 121(I), COMMUNICATION INSTRUCTIONS – GENERAL (PDF) (Report). pp. 3A-1–3A-8. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 8, 2016. Retrieved Aug 8, 2011.
  2. ^ Nathaniel Bowditch, American Practical Navigator, Chapter 18 "Time", Section 1806 "Zone Time".
  3. ^ "ATP 6-02.70 Techniques for Spectrum Management Operations" (PDF). Retrieved 2020-07-21.
  4. ^ "Administrative Instructions: Expressing Time", Guidance for Plans, Orders, and Annexes, United States Army

External links[edit]