North West Swell and Current Prediction System

RPS is providing state-of-the-art forecasting and prediction of ocean currents and swell conditions for a major export terminal in the north west of Australia. The RPS system is based on science, technology and innovation developed over 40 years of metocean measurement and modelling for design and engineering applications, and comprises:

  • measurement-calibrated wind fields
  • tropical cyclone vortex blending
  • long period swell propagation into port locations
  • measurement-calibrated ocean current modelling
  • cyclonic wave fields that drive mid-range swell and evoke maximum heave in vessels at berth
  • spectral wave calibration using measurements. 

RPS provides these services, and the bundled services of local and international weather providers, through the RPS OceansMAP portal, a cutting-edge delivery platform engineered by RPS and used by government, defence and industry groups worldwide. The system has been effective at forecasting events that have caused significant port interruptions, including dangerous and costly line breaks. During the tropical cyclone season the system also supports operational decision-making, providing essential timing on swell arrivals and the wind, wave and current impacts of tropical cyclones on operations.  These are essential services for the safety and efficiency of port operations.

Expertise Summary

Ongoing project for a Major Port Operator

  • Operational forecast system – daily updates
  • Hydrodynamic modelling
  • Tropical cyclone wind blending
  • Spectral wave modelling
  • Measurement ingestion and tuning
  • Online interactive processing and access
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Technology and Data Management

RPS applied a variety of in-house and third-party open source technology during this project and ingested, processed and presented many data streams. Some of these are listed below.


SHOC (Open source hydrodynamic model)
WW3 (Open source wave model)
Linux-based operational model management
RPS Environmental Data Server
OceansMAP portal technology

Data Streams

Wave buoys
Ocean current profilers
Meteorological sensors
Tropical Cyclone forecasts
Weather Forecasts

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