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Typical FWS graphical display with real-time data and a 9 hour forecast giving a clear understanding of how the weather conditions develop.

The offshore weather predictor

by Bjørnhild Vigerust

Everybody is talking about the weather, but only Automasjon og Data, specialist in monitoring systems, knows.


Some work tasks and complex operations – such as heavy lifting operations and transport of large constructions – can only be done under certain favorable weather conditions. That is a well-known fact in offshore and marine operations.

- Specialized offshore vessels install sophisticated electronic systems to monitor important parameters, such as wind, current, waves, vessel motions and many others in order to have exact data available, says Jon Arne Silgjerd, Managing Director in Automasjon og Data (A+D).

Also drilling in deeper waters will often bring challenges related to fluctuating and unpredictable currents.

- These may have a critical influence on both rig location and installation of expensive equipment. Current profilers with capability of measuring sea currents down to more than 1000 meters water depth are available and can be tailor made to the installation, Silgjerd adds.

Tailormade and user-friendly

Experienced staff “flying out” on new missions.

The instrumentation company A+D in Sandnes, Norway is a specialist company in building and installing such monitoring systems, typically called Environmental Monitoring Systems (EMS), Current Monitoring Systems (CMS), Vessel Motion Monitoring Systems (VMS) or Helideck Motion Monitoring Systems (HMS).

Read more about A+D

- These systems typically include a suite of sensors to measure these parameters, such as wind sensors, meteorological sensors, motion sensors, current profilers and wave sensors, Silgjerd explains.

This information can then be combined with data from the vessels motion sensors and other data in order to see the complete picture.

- The DADAS software refined by A+D over many years is simple and user-friendly, and will give the user a quick and useful understanding of the situation. DADAS can always be tailor-made to the specific project in order to give the user exactly the data he requires for the project or work task, says [name].

Read more about the DADAS software

Smart solutions for the future

A new development is the ability to combine measured real-time data with very accurate forecasts of the next hours and days. A+D is now cooperating with the specialist forecasting company ConWx Aps in order to develop what is called a Forecasting Weather Station or FCS.

- The FCS is a combination of a product and a service, where an online weather station is combined with smart forecasting technology in order to give the user both real-time data showing the present situation and a good prediction of the future, says Silgjerd.

By transmitting real-time data to the forecasters, the accuracy can be improved significantly, giving demanding users a much higher quality forecast.

- This can in turn reduce the amount of downtime considerably. And in applications where downtime costs money, this can be a highly profitable investment, says Silgjerd.