Underwater Robots for More Accurate Ocean Data from The North Sea 

Underwater robots in the form of gliders will navigate through the North Sea taking measurements, such as salinity and temperature under a collaboration between National Oceanography Centre (NOC) and the Met Office for improvement in collection and distribution of data from the North Sea.   

The state-of-the-art gliders are capable of operating independently for long periods of time whilst their cutting-edge sensors excel at gathering crucial information about the state of UK oceans. The data gathered by the gliders will be vital to inform future ocean modelling conditions and weather patterns, and will support decision making in vital UK services, such as search and rescue, counter-pollution, and ocean biodiversity.  

The collaboration aims to gather more accurate real-time ocean data to improve the accuracy of weather forecasting and to generate a better analysis of the state of the North Sea.  

The new temperature and salinity measurements by the underwater robots will be fed daily into Met Office forecast models. This is part of a wider programme to increase the amount of observational data for ingestion into models run on the new supercomputer and will support the continuous work by the Met Office to improve forecast accuracy. 

The NOC has partnered with the Met Office since the 1990’s, developing ocean models that underpin these developments in weather forecasting capability. The success over the last year has led the Met Office to recently extended the contract with NOC to provide these measurements for a further three years. 



National Oceanography Centre 2024. News – State-of-the-art underwater robots to play crucial role in weather forecasting. Posted 5 March 2024. Available at  


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