Fishing boat in the evening

Marine data service FAQs

Are the files that I see only visible to me? Or is the dataset folder I have been provided access to visible to others?

Each customer has their own folder, visible only to that customer and our internal support team.

Am I able to delete files in the folder I am given access to?

You will not have delete permissions but there is a retention policy in place so that only three days’ worth of data will be stored in the folder.

Can I request access to only the data for a single grid-point rather than the whole dataset?

We are not currently able to customise the feeds for individuals whilst keeping the data free to users. We hope that the data will eventually be available via API, which would allow selection of custom points or areas, but this is not imminent.

When I first login using my provided credentials, I can only see a folder with no files in it. Is this normal?

Yes, you may have to wait until the following day to see the first files appear in the folder.

How do I access the FTP server once I have received confirmation of my username, hostname, and password?

You need to use an FTP Client to access the data. We use the open source clients FileZilla or WinSCP, but others are available. If you install one of these, and then set up the connection FTP on port 21 with the username and password we supplied, you should be able to access the data.

I get a warning message when I first connect to the FTP server stating that the 'server’s host key is unknown’ and I am asked whether I want to always 'trust this host' and add this key to the cache. What should I do?

Please select to always trust this host and carry on connecting. This is expected behaviour when connecting to a server for the first time as it will not be listed in your known hosts file.

Does the Met Office provide archived marine data via the UKMCAS service?

No, not currently. Copernicus used to store and provide this data but with the removal of our datasets from Copernicus in January 2024 this is no longer available.

Does the Met Office provide marine reanalysis data via the UKMCAS service?

No, not directly. However, the Met Office will continue to generate marine reanalysis data for the Northwest European Shelf region which will be released by the Copernicus Marine Service until further notice. These long-term datasets are consistent with the forecasts available from the UKMCAS service, as they use the same scientific set-up and modelling systems.

Does the Met Office have a recommended approach for applying model Sea-Surface Height (SSH) to a reference datum?

Yes. Our recommended approach is to obtain values for both the reference data and model Sea-Surface Height (SSH) relative to Mean Sea Level (MSL), at which point the values can be added. Steps to do this are as follows:

  1. Obtain a valid charted depth and/or offset between your chosen reference datum and local Mean Sea Level (MSL)
  2. Reduce model SSH relative to MSL by subtracting a model MSL estimate (this estimate can be derived either by generating a long-term average, at least several years, from model SSH fields or using a Mean Dynamic Topography consistent with the model’s data assimilation scheme)
  3. Calculate the SSH relative to the reference datum by adding the local offset value to the MSL reduced model SSH.

For further detailed information, including advice on generating a model MSL estimate, please contact [email protected] and request a copy of our more detailed support documentation.

How long will the data stay in the folder? How many days of data will build up?

The data retention policy for the UKMCAS service means that three days (72 hours) worth of data will be stored in the folder. You will see data for the current day plus the previous two days’ worth of data.