The data, and the NMIMET analysis used to create it

The data in Global Wave Statistics Online is based on visual observations of wind speed and wave height obtained from the UK Meteorological Office. The following pages explain in more detail the way in which the data was generated and loaded into the database.

Review of Available Wave Data Sources

Firstly it is worth considering other possible sources of data to set the database in context.

Sources of wave data currently available may conveniently be considered under the three main headings:

  1. Instrumental (including remote sensing from satellites).
  2. Hindcast (estimated from wind field analysis).
  3. Visual.

In general, instrumental data are preferred where possible because they are considered to be most reliable. However, in practice it is often necessary to use hindcast or visual data because of the greater availability covering long periods of time in most sea areas.