Fast delivery of complex historical data set

Snapshot of modeled depth-averaged current flow in and around the Irish Sea. The red dot indicates the location where model currents were validated. 

Snapshot of modeled depth-averaged current flow in and around the Irish Sea. The red dot indicates the location where model currents were validated. 

When a client urgently needs a complex historical data set for a tricky location, MetOcean Solutions rises to the challenge. 

Earlier this year, a client was planning to install a submarine cable in the Irish Sea. Ravaged by frequent storms and energetic tidal currents, the Irish Sea is a challenging location for offshore work. In order to allow the specification of robust design criteria, the client required coupled wave and current long term hindcast data. 

Due to the project urgency the client required both modelling outputs and extreme event analysis delivered within a five week timeframe. Given the importance of the work, full validation metrics on the data were required as well.  

Putting our can-do attitude to the test, the Hindcast Team managed to find, obtain and quality check in situ measurements of wave heights, currents and water elevations, allowing the successful calibration of wave and current models. The group ran a 20 year current hindcast, after which a 20 year wave hindcast was specified using the currents as one of the forcing fields. After a concerted effort the design report was finished within the five week timeframe specified by the client. 

The fast delivery of comprehensive historical data sets for complex locations is par for the course for the active Hindcast Team. The expert scientists in the group have comprehensive experience with the caveats of modelling and the creation and validation of historical data sets, which allows the anticipation and smoothing out of any problems that arise. 

"We have spent a lot of time on architecting and developing scripts, systems and software that allow us to focus on the science and leaving the heavy lifting automated," states Dr Rafael Soutelino. "We essentially submit batches of calibration experiments all at once, which means we get results back fast, freeing us up to make scientific decisions and submit more experiments as necessary to refine the process. Because most of the repetitive work is abstracted, we tend to keep focussed on the high-level ideas that are relevant to the outcome."

Left: QUANTILE-QUANTILE PLOT OF CURRENT SPEED AT 23.7 M BELOW SEA LEVEL AT THE VALIDATION LOCATION. RIGHT: TAYLOR DIAGRAM OF CURRENT SPEED AT 23.7 M  OF DEPTH. THE COMPARISON IS FOR THE PERIOD 23/06/2006 - 24/07/2006.

Left: QUANTILE-QUANTILE PLOT OF CURRENT SPEED AT 23.7 M BELOW SEA LEVEL AT THE VALIDATION LOCATION. RIGHT: TAYLOR DIAGRAM OF CURRENT SPEED AT 23.7 M  OF DEPTH. THE COMPARISON IS FOR THE PERIOD 23/06/2006 - 24/07/2006.

The team also benefits from the smart use of compute hardware enabled by MetOcean Solutions' IT infrastructure and code, which sends alerts to the team members in the event of system failure, and allows the re-establishment of a long-term hindcast from a smartphone or from anywhere with internet connection.  

"Our workplace policy of flexible hours also helps on these short turnaround projects," adds Rafael. "We tend to press on hard with a project like this until we see that we're winning. Once things are running to schedule, we then take time off to breathe." 

The data now joins MetOcean solutions library of hindcast datasets. For information on how to access these data, please contact us at enquiries@metocean.co.nz