How to use Ocean Data on a PC / Mac
Lisa McDonald avatar
Written by Lisa McDonald
Updated over a week ago

Ocean & Tidal Current forecast data can be viewed within the Offshore App on a PC/Mac computer. You can access ocean currents – Hycom & Mercator plus global tidal currents and SST (Sea Surface Temperature).

  • In the Offshore App, Professional version users have access to the best ocean data in the form of Sea Surface temperature and Ocean and Tidal currents from 3 different sources.

  • Move your green start waypoint and red destination waypoint to your desired locations, the same as for the other tools. This will automatically select an area around your route to get the data. Or you can click and drag the corners of the white box to set your own download area.

  • Then click Download.

  • At the bottom of the download settings box select Ocean data to be on in the tick box.

  • For SST you can select 1km resolution for smaller areas or 4km resolution to cover a larger area. The SST data can be used to validate which ocean current forecast is showing the most accurate data.

  • Next you can select the 3 different ocean and Tidal currents models.

  • The Tidal Currents can be viewed on a global level, but the global level is low resolution and hence less accurate than the high resolution areas for specific regions around the world. You can see the high resolution areas on the map in the Offshore App, they are blue when not selected, pink when selected for download, and yellow once downloaded and available to view.

  • Then we have the Hycom Currents model, this is the ocean current forecast driven by GFS forecast. Hycom is available in 2 time periods 24 hours and 7 days.

  • Then we have the Mercator model,this is the ocean current forecast driven by data from ECMWF.

  • Now continue to download. Press "Next". In the next box select your weather routing to download as this can overlay on the current and SST data

  • Press "Next".

  • Then "Download All". The GRIB files will be too large for low bandwidth satellite & SSB connections. However the weather routing will contain the current data for the route using the Mercator Ocean Currents or High resolution tides if available.

  • Once downloaded you will see the weather routing tables, you can view these or go to the “map” to start viewing your Ocean Data.

  • From the main menu click on "Ocean Currents", you will see the Mercator Ocean Currents or High resolution tides displayed with your weather routing. Zoom to your desired level and then press play. On the animation control you can control the animation speed with the control toggle on the bottom right. You can pause and rewind or skip the animation with these controls. Alternatively, drag and drop the blue circle or click on the time slider at your desired time. The boats will move along the route in time with the animation of the Ocean data.

  • We can also select the different models by clicking on the model menu. Next we can validate the model data by comparing it to the SST. Click on Sea Temp. You can compare the temperature differences in relation to current flows. The currents model that most closely matches the sst data is the most accurate currents model for this forecast run. The SST does not animate, as it is an observation not a forecast, it uses the latest available data.

  • If you wish to view the Ocean currents and SST without the weather routing overlaid, click on the Show Route button, to remove the route and view just the current / SST data.

  • Please view the video above or click here for more information

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