DEL074 – 11201382 Consortium to improve & innovate Global circulation forecasting tools; Deltares Global Tide and Surge Model and the Volvo Ocean Race (GTSM-VOR)

Aanleiding van het project

The ability to produce rapid and reliable water level and (multi-level)
current predictions anywhere around the globe at any time will provide
a cutting-edge advantage to users of the system compared to potential
competitors. This is especially relevant to Dutch industry that is active
in many coastal areas (e.g. dredging and offshore wind), coastal
maintenance and harbour development.
These improved techniques will allow for optimal navigation decisions
not just in the competitive sailing sector, but most importantly will
support optimization of trade routes and promote more efficient
The global model will find applications in areas of low data availability,
which are difficult to access, and with complex dynamics. It can be used
in areas vulnerable to storms and cyclones where fast and accurate
local information is required for emergency decision-making and
disaster risk reduction.
For the offshore and coastal infrastructure industry (e.g. harbours,
dredging, navigation), the GTSMcan provide fast, reliable water level
and current predictions, even in the absence of detailed measurements.
This can be used in planning and rapid assessment studies as well as
linked to operational modelling activities.

Doel van het project

The objective of this current cooperation project is to improve the
generic knowledge on global circulation prediction tools (numerical
modelling, handling large datasets, stabilizing workflows, optimizing
exports) to be able to develop new products and services as relevant to
the industry sector. Emphasis on improving quality and usability of
global circulation products, form the view point of industry
We will test the reliability and usability of the predictions provided by
the GTSM in some real cases, and use the feedback and experience
gained to improve the overall performance of the system and to make it
available to even more users.

Uitgevoerde activiteiten

See attached the detailed work plan. From the project inception in June
2017 until its finish in July 2018, there are developments and activities
every month.
The workload is closely associated with the timing of legs of the Volvo
Ocean Race 2017-2018. The planning shows the different contributions
by Deltares and by Team AkzoNobel. In short, after inception on 1 June
Q2 2017: Mobilization, 1st pilot
Q3 2017: 2nd pilot, Pre-race improvements
Q4 2017: Actual race start, DCSM3D work intensifies
Q1 2018: Several legs & feedback, DCSM3D work continues
Q2 2018: Several legs & feedback, system evaluation & wrap-up
A separate table details the proposed interactions with the other
partners and the potential end-users of the results. At least 7 meetings
are proposed during the development.

Gerealiseerde resultaten

A major part of the proposed activities is the delivery of surface current
predictions up to 7 days in advance in a number of areas around the
globe, corresponding to the planned legs of the Volvo Ocean Race. The
selection of the areas and the timeframes is derived from the
discussions with partners about their specific needs, and their on-going
feedback about the predictions as they are produced.
Horizontal resolution of the tiles differs depending on the location,
between 0.025° and 0.050° resolution. The results of the GTSMwill be
exported as GRIB files on a regular grid for the end-users to download
and use. The results include surface currents that are composed of
components from tidal currents (GTSM) and non-tidal currents (from
the HYCOMNRL model).
Output from this cooperation can be summarized: Improved software,
dealing with global circulation predictions (improving both the numerical
models and the capability/techniques to deal with large data); A better
fit with the industries desires in terms of output formats, preferred
media, frequency, etc.
Per activity, outputs will be:
Q2 2017: Improved forecasts in the North Sea
Q3 2017: Improved forecasts in the North Sea, Biscay Bay, west Iberia,
global tool
Q4 2017: Improved system with optimized formats and media
Q1 2017: Continued global forecasts, improved operational DCSM3D
Q2 2017: Overview document at the end of the project. Active
participation in the final workshop at the end of the Volvo Ocean Race,
June 2018 in Scheveningen.


In this joint development, there will be intensive cooperation between
Deltares (the knowledge institute and software developer), Team
AkzoNobel (the in-situ output tester and main feedback-provider) and
the other parties (secondary feedback-providers and future users /
early-adopters) to improve global circulation forecast tools as needed
by the industry. Improving both the GTSMand the DCSM numerical
models’ accuracy, but also the operational platform’s ability to handle
large datasets and produce the desired output are parallel relevant
innovation components.
Here a major hurdle is providing global surface current maps which
combine both tidal circulation (most important over continental shelves)
and non-tidal circulation (most important over deeper ocean waters)
accurately, yet without needing a large investment in raw
computational power. For this, one needs clever tools to handle large
datasets elegantly.
These improved techniques will allow for optimal navigation decisions
not just in the competitive sailing sector, but most importantly will
support optimization of trade routes and promote more efficient


Added-value to private investors such as contractors and consultants for
early adoption: Although results will eventually be freely available (e.g.
open source), supporters & early-adopters of this development would
be able to contribute to the software development by suggesting
desired features of their own. This will provide the early adopters with a
head-start on the competition by being involved in the development of
specific tools to handle the model output, which can be adapted where
necessary to comply with specific company requirements. These
features would allow contractors and consultants to react much faster to
worldwide opportunities that require knowledge of detailed flow fields.
Cost savings to the companies will be achieved due to an improved
consistency of modelling results globally. This will replace the need to
rely on various regional models for different locations, each with their
own characteristics and needing different personnel to maintain and
operate them.

Link naar projectresultaten…