About Research Forecasting MetOcean Studies News Current Marine Data

History of Oceanweather

Oceanweather Inc. (OWI) was formed in 1977 as a small business in White Plains, NY (USA). The original principals in the company, Dr. V. J. Cardone, Dr. J. A. Greenwood and Ms. C. V. Greenwood, had worked together on federally-sponsored research programs at New York University and the City University of New York, where Dr. Cardone was Associate Professor of Meteorology and Oceanography. The group were an integral part of the team which in the late 1960's, under the supervision of Professor Willard J. Pierson of New York University, developed and transferred to the U.S. Navy Fleet Numerical Oceanography Center (FNOC), the first spectral ocean wave model (SOWM) used for operational hemispheric real-time wave forecasting.

Dr. Vince Cardone and Dr. Arthur Greenwood, 1989

OWI later developed a global version of the FNOC model (GSOWM), which was implemented in 1985 and operated until 1994. In the early 1980's, a new second-generation wave model (2G) was developed at Oceanweather under sponsorship of the U.S. NOAA Sea-Air Interaction Laboratory (the SAIL model: Greenwood, Cardone and Lawson, 1985). That model was later implemented as NOAA's operational global model (the NOW model) for real-time analysis and forecasting, and was implemented as a regional model by the Norwegian Meteorological Service (the WINCH model). Wave model development continued with OWI as the only private firm part of the WAM group, which developed the first third-generation (3G) spectral model and in a parallel effort developed its own 3G model.

In the first two years of operation, about 80% of OWI's support consisted of research grants from NASA, NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), and the U.S. Navy. The remaining 20% consisted of consulting contracts from the major international oil companies. Thereafter, while the government-funded work was maintained at a stable level of support, the offshore industry and coastal engineering industry supported work grew to constitute the major share of OWI's revenues by the early 1980s.

In 1983, OWI moved to Cos Cob, CT to accommodate increased staff and a fully configured super-minicomputer installation. At the same time, OWI added a real-time forecasting division to its business in response to desire from several major international oil companies to apply its high-level technology to ocean wind and wave prediction. In 1987, one of the founding principles, C. V. Greenwood, resigned to pursue a career change and a decade later the other founding principal, J. A. Greenwood, retired at age 70.

During the 1980s, OWI worked on major Joint Industry Projects (JIPs) in establishing the hindcast approach for site operability and design. Following the Ocean Data Gathering Project (ODGP), a trio of Gulf of Mexico JIP studies known as GUMSHOE (Gulf of Mexico Hindcast of Oceanographic Extremes), WINX (Winter Extremes - Gulf of Mexico), and GLOW (Gulf Long Term Weather) were developed for the offshore oil and gas industry and have been applied in the design and certification of the vast majority of offshore structures in the Gulf. GOMOS (Gulf of Mexico Oceanographic Study) launched in 1999 and superseded the original studies. GOMOS remains the database applied by the U.S. regulator BSEE (Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement) for licensing offshore structures in the Gulf. The JIP approach has been expanded to encompass much of the offshore drilling basins including the North Sea (NEXTRA), South China Sea (SEAFINE), West Africa (WANE), Arctic (PAMOS), Sakhalin Island (SIMOS), Northwest Shelf of Australia (NAMOS), and others.

In the mid-1990s, OWI made a strategic decision to augment its commissioned projects and consulting service with in-house studies for marine areas and basins of interest to the industry. These "speculative" products are offered on a site-specific basis subject to a licensing agreement. OWI continues to expand its suite of speculative product offerings and provides high quality metocean data with particular attention to the extremes which drive design decisions.

The 2000's brought the development of the first long-term global and regional reanalysis efforts. OWI's Global Reanalysis of Ocean Waves (GROW) was the first 40+ year global wave hindcast and was published in JGR Oceans. An extensive hindcast effort, supported by Environment Canada, developed the AES40 and MSC50 hindcasts which involved detailed reanalysis for the North Atlantic and Canadian maritimes. OWI also developed the wind forcing applied for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wave Information Study (WIS) for the U.S. East, West, Alaska and Hawaiian coastlines.

In 2003, Oceanweather became an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) company in which the employees participate as owners of the company. As an ESOP, employees as owners are active participants in the success and future of the company.

Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, OWI was a key member of the Interagency Performance Evaluation Task Force (IPET) lead by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. This storm also prompted an evaluation and restudy of the coastal flood risk for all U.S. Coastlines by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). OWI contributed to studies in all FEMA regions (U.S. East/West coasts, Gulf of Mexico and Great Lakes) providing expertise in tropical wind modeling, extra-tropical storm analysis, and ocean response modeling needs of the various studies.

During late 2005, OWI formed a joint venture with Danish Hydraulics Institute (DHI) to develop and market "PERGOS". PERGOS provides meteorological and oceanographic design data for the entire Arabian/Persian Gulf. The development of joint products continued when the Mid Atlantic Current Hindcast (MACH), a joint venture product between OWI, BMT Argoss and the MetOffice, was launched in 2015 to provide a comprehensive 3-D current hindcast for West Africa.

Dr. Vince Cardone, 2012

Oceanweather was saddened by the passing of its founder, Dr. Vincent Cardone, in November of 2013. It was a great loss to those who knew him as a teacher, a colleague, a friend, and a great man. Vince put his heart and soul into Oceanweather and its employees, and the hard work the company continues to perform honors his lasting memory.

Oceanweather has continued its long tradition of active engagement and publication in the academic community. OWI has been an active part of the Wave Workshop series of meetings since its inception in 1986 and is pleased to host the archive for the metocean community at www.waveworkshop.org. Oceanweather have a long history of collaboration with the ADCIRC storm surge model community having co-authored ocean response modeling efforts for hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Ike, Gustav, Jeanne and others impacting the U.S. coastline. Wind fields developed for ocean-response modeling by OWI in tropical and extra-tropical storms are considered the "gold-standard" for definitive hindcasts and calibration of ocean response models.

OWI moved to its present location at 350 Bedford Street, Suite 404, Stamford, CT in the summer of 2016. Remaining true to the founders, Oceanweather continues to develop, learn, and engage in metocean modeling and analysis. The team of OWI meteorologists and ocean engineers are dedicated to improving the science of producing metocean hindcasts and forecasts worthy of the exceptional reputation earned in the industry.

Copyright 2001-2018 Oceanweather, Inc. | Privacy Policy | Legal Terms and Conditions | Contact