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4.10 Support for IEEE Special Values

The ANSI/IEEE-754 floating-point number standard defines certain special values that are used to represent such quantities as Not-a-Number (NaN), denormalized, underflow, overflow, and infinity. (See the Appendix in the NOST FITS standard or the NOST FITS User's Guide for a list of these values). The FITSIO subroutines that read floating point data in FITS files recognize these IEEE special values and by default interpret the overflow and infinity values as being equivalent to a NaN, and convert the underflow and denormalized values into zeros. In some cases programmers may want access to the raw IEEE values, without any modification by FITSIO. This can be done by calling the FTGPVx or FTGCVx routines while specifying 0.0 as the value of the NULLVAL parameter. This will force FITSIO to simply pass the IEEE values through to the application program, without any modification. This does not work for double precision values on VAX/VMS machines, however, where there is no easy way to bypass the default interpretation of the IEEE special values.


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