A unique ocean data source for academic use

Direct and easy access via API to the largest global ocean data sensor network

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Turn observations into insights

Global Buoy Network

Real-time access to observational data from the world's largest fleet of open ocean, free drifting, metocean sensors. Sofar’s Spotter buoys measure wave spectra with an onboard GPS unit and infer wind speed and direction. Each buoy transmits data in real-time via satellite connection. 

Learn about Spotter buoy

Enabling Ocean Science

University-affiliated students, faculty members, and researchers receive free access to our observational and forecast data for non-commercial use.

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Easy to Access

Access data via our API, or speak to our team of experts, to gain access to global in-situ observational, and high-resolution forecast and hindcast data. Our cloud powered API is always available, continuously upgraded, and customizable.

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Our Data APIs

Spotter Sensor

Access to both real-time and historical sensor data from our Spotter buoy network

  • Wave statistics (bulk or complete spectra)
  • U10 wind speed and direction
  • Surface displacement (drift current)
  • Per buoy or whole network
* Our marine weather suite includes access to surface waves, wind, and circulation forecasts. It also includes the Sofar Wave Model, which is a high-resolution wave forecast that achieves unprecedented accuracy through assimilation of observations from our sensor network.

Instant real-time access

Retrieve real-time in-situ observational data and high-resolution model data on-demand.

No FTP servers

RESTful APIs developed for the needs of developers and data scientists

Cloud powered APIs

Designed for the cloud, our API is always available, continuously upgraded, and can be customized to meet your needs.

Sample the API data below

Selected literature featuring Sofar data

  1. P.B. Smit, I.A. Houghton, K.Jordanova, T. Portwooda, E.Shapiro, D. Clark, M.Sosa, T.T. Janssen. "Assimilation of significant wave height from distributed ocean wave sensors." Ocean Modelling, Volume 159, March 2021.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ocemod.2020.101738
  2. Pieter B. Smit and Tim T. Janssen. "Swell Propagation through Submesoscale Turbulence." Journal of Physical Oceanography. vol. 49, no. 10, 2019, pp. 2615-2630. https://doi.org/10.1175/JPO-D-18-0250.1 
  3. J. J. Voermans, P. B. Smit, T. T. Janssen, A. V. Babanin. "Estimating Wind Speed and Direction Using Wave Spectra." Journal of Geophysical Research: Oceans. vol. 125, no. 2, 2020. https://doi.org/10.1029/2019JC015717
  4. I.A. Houghton, P.B. Smit, D. Clark, C. Dunning, A. Fisher, N. Nidzieko, P. Chamberlain, and T.T. Janssen. "Performance statistics of a real-time Pacific Ocean weather sensor network." Journal of Atmospheric and Oceanic Technology. 21 April 2021. https://doi.org/10.1175/JTECH-D-20-0187.1

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