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Mitigating Extreme Weather in Maritime

Mitigating Extreme Weather in Maritime
EU's MOWE-IT project identifies existing technologies to develop methodologies to mitigate against extreme weather. This webinar provides findings related to: The Open Sea and Port Operations

​​Webinar was held Wednesday October 8th, 2014

Vaisala is actively supporting the European Union with the maritime aspects of its MOWE-IT project. The project identifies existing technologies to develop methodologies to mitigate against extreme weather. This webinar provides a short review of the findings related to: The Open Sea and Port Operations. The speaker will be Paul Hutchinson, the member in the MOWE-IT project. 

Under The Open Sea we consider:

  • The role of IMO (International Maritime Organisation) – Safety First.
  • Reducing the number of accidents occurring in the open sea.
  • The role of WMO (World Meteorological Organisation) – Weather Information.
  • Weather information and warnings.
  • The role of the IT sector – Navigation Systems.
  • The open sea has a lot of challenges – extreme weather is one of the most critical.
  • The challenges of wind, waves and ice - what can be improved and how.
  • Weather Forecast Quality.

Under Port Operations we consider:

  • A definition of extreme weather in ports.
  • Early warning mechanisms and communication.
  • Port commerce – how important is it?
  • The IT sector in ports – VTS (Vessel Traffic Systems) and AIS (Automated Identification Systems)
  • Weather information in ports.
  • Wind and waves - where do things go wrong – how can we fix them?
  • Weather Forecast Quality.

Q: Is there any idea with regard to schedule for wind measurement instrument (and possibly other weather parameters) to become an IMO requirement and consequently published at MED (=Maritime Equipment Directive) List A.1?

A: The first thing is to note that it is quite worrying in all this discussion that some of these things are not already in IMO requirement. The leader of this maritime study is the second in command at the Odessa National Maritime Academy in Ukraine. Clearly the team has worked very closely on this project. He and the Academy meet directly with the IMO at least twice a year. Certainly the intention is that the conclusions, findings, recommendations of this work will be discussed directly with them. Beyond that things do not happen overnight but such changes are a strong possibility.

Q: Do you have any further information to help me to understand the comparison between ultrasonic and mechanic wind sensor?

A: If you put the question into search engines, you will find some independent sources of information. Certainly I have deliberately not included a lot of Vaisala specific information in this presentation. But if I were to point you in a convenient direction, you could go to website. There is information there. Beyond that, Vaisala has already done a few webinars about ultrasonics. (The recordings can be found here.)  For me personally there is an excellent white paper relating to use of ultrasonics in the energy market. (The white paper can be found here.)

Q: Can Vaisala help to choose the right sensors and install those into right locations on site (site survey) and how the weather data can be gathered and distributed?

A: In the presentation we suggest port authorities seek help from professional met organizations.  Yes, Vaisala can certainly provide professional assistance directly. We have already worked with port authorities and LNG terminals. We have visited the ports or terminal, looked at their existing or proposed sites, then discussed with them and advised how we would approach things and why. We have then gone on to work with their VTS supplier for example or directly with them and put the sensors in.  The objective is to get the data where it is used to make meaningful operational decisions and yes we can look after data storage and things like that.

Q: Can Vaisala integrate lightning detection into the general harbor weather system? What is the real benefit ?

A: Yes of course. Vaisala provides a range of lightning detection equipment and services. The question we must ask you is how are you affected in your particular harbor location. When we understand your operational needs and how you must react to this risk, then we can advise if you require your own sensors, or our GLD360 service may be enough, or a combination. Please have a look at these product links – then contact us and we can provide more advice.

Q: Has Vaisala any sea state sensors available for the harbors?

A: When it comes to sea-state in harbor Vaisala uses a combination of its own sensors and other 3rdparty sensors depending on local requirements. While all harbors do a similar job, they are all unique in location and local requirements. The best advice is to contact us about your specific location and we can offer you best advice for your location.​


Paul Hutchinson has been with Vaisala for 25 years working throughout Europe, USA and Canada. During that time he has worked as Operations Manager, Programme Manager, Sales and Account Manager and currently as Business Development Manager for Weather Services in UK and Ireland. Paul is also currently engaged with the EU Commission ‘MOWE-IT’ Project, as a Vaisala expert advisor, looking to reduce the impact of severe weather events in ports, near shore, and in the deep sea environments.

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