The voluntary observing ship (VOS) scheme

Kent, E.C. ORCID:; Ball, G.; Berry, D.I; Fletcher, J.; Hall, A.; North, S.; Woodruff, S.D.. 2010 The voluntary observing ship (VOS) scheme. In: Hall, J.; Harrison, D.E.; Stammer, D., (eds.) Proceedings of OceanObs’09: Sustained Ocean Observations and Information for Society, Vol. 2. Noordwijk, The Netherlands, European Space Agency, 551-561. (ESA Special Publication, WPP-306).

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The Voluntary Observing Ships (VOS) Scheme is an observing program for marine meteorology, continuing a record extending back centuries. VOS are an important component of the surface observing system, providing air and sea surface temperatures, humidity, pressure, wind speed and direction, cloud cover, waves, ice and weather data. Observational metadata allow biases to be diagnosed and corrected. Despite its importance, the Scheme faces challenges. Observation numbers have declined as more data from satellites and buoys becomes available. However buoys and satellites do not replace the full multivariate VOS record which is needed for applications including climate monitoring, air-sea interaction and satellite validation. Other issues include changes to the transmission system and the security and commercial concerns of ship operators whose ships are identified in the data stream. Current initiatives are aimed at improving data quality, real time metadata availability and archival of data for climate applications

Item Type: Publication - Book Section
Additional Keywords: Marine Meteorology, in situ observations, ocean observing system
Date made live: 15 Dec 2009 +0 (UTC)

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