transfer intrinsic can be used to emulate C’s type casting
wherein a pointer to an arbitrary type is passed as a void pointer.
The example program below illustrates how to encode a user-defined
type in a character array. For further details, see Advanced Fortran
90: Callbacks with the Transfer Function.
! The transfer intrinsic is Fortran 95's version of a void pointer. ! This program shows how to use transfer to encode a user-defined type ! in a character array. program transfer_ex implicit none ! A user-defined data type type :: data_t real :: x end type data_t ! Data to be encoded type(data_t), target :: d ! Encode data as an array of characters (one byte each) character(len=1), dimension(:), allocatable :: enc integer :: length ! Stash our data in d d%x = 9.d0 print *, 'Data: ', d%x ! Encode the data_t object in a character array length = size(transfer(d, enc)) allocate(enc(length)) enc = transfer(d, enc) print *, 'Encoded: ', enc ! Decode again as data_t d = transfer(enc, d) print *, 'Decoded: ', d%x ! Clean up deallocate(enc) end program transfer_ex