Please select your home edition
Edition
T Clewring AC72

Major technology upgrade gives PredictWind faster forecast updates

by Zoe Hawkins on 17 Sep 2012
Jon Bilger (right) product testing Predictwind aboard then Volvo Ocean Race leader Telefonica, with skipper Iker Martinez, during the VOR Practice Day on the Waitemata. © Richard Gladwell http://www.richardgladwell.com

Popular wind forecast site PredictWind has achieved dramatic speed efficiencies by adopting Amazon Web Services’ Cloud computing to deliver high-resolution wind forecasts for almost any part of the globe.

Wherever you are right now, look out the window because chances are that somewhere within a kilometre of your location, there is a corresponding arrow on PredictWind's map, that will give you a very accurate prediction of wind direction and wind speed, for that location, for every hour over the next 24 hours.

And now, thanks to a move to advanced Cloud computing, that data will be even more accurate and timely. In fact, the breeze you feel on your face right now, will be combined with data from Satellite, Land, Air and Sea observations, to produce a detailed forecast that is available on your smartphone or computer, in one to twelve hours’
time.

From sailing and fishing, to camping or motorcycling, the increased speed with which this data is now delivered will help you to plan your race, expedition, event or industrial activity with even greater precision and safety, says PredictWind founder Jon Bilger of the company that commercialized America's Cup wind forecast technology and made it available at the highest possible resolution.

By co-opting Amazon Web Services for its Cloud computing power, PredictWind has access to almost six times more computing power with which to process its Volvo Ocean Race-proven weather models.

'Ultimately, that means that our customers get forecasts up to nine hours sooner because instead of splitting the globe into four segments, we can process the forecast for the entire planet at once,' says Jon Bilger.

Jon Bilger says that the investment in computing power is absorbed by the company’s ever-expanding customer base, and it also means that because of Amazon Web Service’s back up systems, the service is virtually failure-proof.

'PredictWind led the way when we launched the highest resolution weather model on the Web, and this is another step ahead. Things can change quickly in a maritime environment and getting the highest resolution forecast in the shortest time possible is what makes the difference between a good and a bad forecast.'

PredictWind’s forecasts are updated every twelve hours and at a one square kilometre resolution, they are the most detailed available.

Also as a result of the move to Cloud computing, PredictWind’s global forecast at 100km resolution has been extended from nine days to twelve days, and increased from 100km resolution to 50km resolution. www.predictwind.com

PredictWind can be accessed via the popular website or an iPhone/Android App. The technology was originally developed for the America's Cup and re-proven in the Volvo Ocean Race. It takes weather observations sourced from tens of thousands of locations around the world via land stations, aircraft, shipping and satellites that are submitted to the World Meterological Organisation and compiled by various agencies into snapshots of the earth's atmosphere, called Initial Conditions Files.

Starting with a 60km resolution model forecasts (imagine dividing up the atmosphere into many 60kmx60km square regions), the model centers on a local area, commencing with these initial condition files and stepping forward in time to create a five day forecast. For each 60kmx60km region, the model uses many complex equations to calculate all meteorological fields, such as wind, temperature, humidity, pressure, rain and their interaction. This process is then repeated for the 8km model run, though it is 'nudged' by the 60km model run.

Finally the 1km resolution model is completed, which is 'nudged' by the 8km model run. This process is repeated automatically every 12 hours for both initial sources (i.e. four forecasts every day). There is no historical data involved, so each 12 hour forecast is independent from the previous.

Related Articles

Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
Kosinska to hit out against the Hyeres heavy metal in 2016 Olympic bid
Natalia Kosinska (NZL) will face a star-studded field in the Womens RS:X event at Hyeres later this week. 2016 Olympic aspirant, Natalia Kosinska (NZL) will face a star-studded field in the Womens RS:X event at the third round of the Sailing World Cup Hyeres.
Posted on 26 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
Rio2016 - Winther hits ball firmly into Olympic selectors' court
2012 Olympic representative, Sara Winther has made a strong bid for inclusion in the 2016 NZ Olympic Sailing Team 2012 Olympic representative, Sara Winther has made a strong bid for inclusion in the 2016 NZ Olympic Sailing Team finishing 11th in the 2016 Laser Radial World Championships in Mexico. Running a self-funded campaign which took in the Princesca Sofia Regatta in Palma, Spain followed by the World Championship on Banderas Bay, Mexico, Winther placed 11th overall and 10th country.
Posted on 21 Apr
Sailing World Cup Hyeres - Kosinska flies out in RS-X Olympic bid
Women's RS:X Windsurfer sailor, Natalia Kosinska (NZL) flew out of Auckland today for the Sailing World Cup Hyeres Women's RS:X Windsurfer sailor, Natalia Kosinska (NZL) flew out of Auckland today for the Sailing World Cup Hyeres, in her final attempt to gain NZ Olympic selection. Kosinska has been training in her own program in New Zealand with the 2015 Women's World Champion, Chen Peina (CHN) in the RS:X Windsurfer, and Zhichao Zhang the Men's #4 at the 2015 Worlds in Oman
Posted on 18 Apr
Laser Radial Worlds - Winther makes top three in final Qualifying race
2012 Olympic Representative, Sara Winther continues to improve at the 2016 Laser Radial Worlds 2012 Olympic Representative, Sara Winther continues to improve at the 2016 Laser Radial Worlds and has moved up the leaderboard to be in 12th place at the end of the shortened Qualifying Round. She placed third in the only race sailed today and continues to improve as the regatta progresses, and her confidence builds.
Posted on 18 Apr
Laser Radial Worlds - Winther scores three single digit places - Day 3
New Zealand 2012 Olympic representative, Sara Winther has advanced three places up the points table New Zealand 2012 Olympic representative, Sara Winther has advanced three places up the points table at the 2016 Laser radial Worlds being sailed in Mexico. She now lies in 15th place overall after three days of racing. She achieved single digit scores in the three races sailed today, despite hitting marks in two races and having to perform penalty turns.
Posted on 17 Apr
Laser Radial Worlds - Kiwis locked in Olympic selection fight - Day 2
The points gap has narrowed between the two elading New Zealand contenders for 2016 Olympic selection The points gap has narrowed between the two lading New Zealand contenders for 2016 Olympic selection in the Womens Singlehanded Laser Radial class.
Posted on 16 Apr
Laser Radial Worlds - Winther off to a handy start in light airs
Sara Winther has got away to a handy start to the 2016 Laser Radial Worlds, being sailed in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico. Sara Winther has got away to a handy start to the 2016 Laser Radial Worlds, being sailed in Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico. She is best placed of the three New Zealand competitors in the regatta, lying in 22nd overall after two races were sailing the Qualifying Round.
Posted on 15 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Sailutions - FurlexT Clewring CruisingBakewell-White Yacht Design