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Convert Oracle Integer to Time

Oracle Tips by Burleson Consulting

June 14, 2011

Question:  I have an integer column that represents time in a 24 hour format where 0900 is 9:00 AM and 2300 is 11 PM. 

How can I convert this integer data type into a valid Oracle time datatype?

Answer:  You can use the to_date built-in function to translate the integer into a valid time. 

In the following example, to_date is used to convert an integer into a valid time, and then embed it in a to_char to display the integer as a time:

SQL> select to_char ( to_date ( '2300', 'HH24MI'), 'HH:MI AM') integer_time from dual;  

INTEGER_TIME
--------
11:00 PM  

Here is another method for converting an integer into a AM PM time format using the fm function:

 select
     to_char(
       to_date('1500','HH24MI')
     ,'fmHH PM') integer_time
from dual;  

INTEGER_TIME
-----
3 PM  

These examples work when the integer time is between 0000 (12:00 AM) and 2359 (11:59 PM).  

If you have values between 0100 (1:00 AM) and 2459 (12:59) AM, you can use the CASE SQL operator to convert the first to character representing the hour 24 to the hour 00:

  -- **************************************
-- when hour is 24xx, convert it to 00xx
-- **************************************
select
    dept_time,
    to_char ( to_date ( case
     when  substr (dept_time, 1, 2) = '24'
       then  '0000'
         else  dept_time
       end
    , 'HH24MI'
    ),
    'FMHHam'
    ) as my_time
from
    mytab;

 
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