Natural Resources Wales Flood Forecast Web Service

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) asked Method4 to develop a bespoke replacement to a static and aging online weather forecast service, which is used round the clock by NRW’s duty officers.

We employed .NET technology to create a system that receives and collates large amounts of raw data from over 200 locations in Wales. This is collected, checked for accuracy and analysed through the world’s first cloud-hosted Deltares Delft-FEWS platform. It is then imported into the Forecast Web Service, giving duty officers a complete overview of the forecast, highlighting potential weather issues, and helping them to focus on any necessary decisions. Combined with a regular import of documents from third party agencies including the Met Office, the system is able to provide a complete picture of the flood risk across Wales through a single interface.

This project was a finalist in the Wales Technology Awards 2017 in the Best Tech Adopter category.

The solution
  • Powered by the world’s first cloud-hosted Deltares Delft-FEWS platform, trusted by leading agencies worldwide
  • Hosted within a resilient cloud-based, Microsoft Azure environment
  • Fully integrated with the ArcGIS mapping platform
  • Combining server-side processing and complex modular Javascript
Technology .NET Azure
Challenges
  • Highly critical system, requiring constant availability
  • Large volumes of data requiring immediate processing
  • Requirement to present a wide range of data using the most accessible methods available
Outcomes and benefits
  • Flexible layout engine, accommodating a vast array of data types
  • Rolling archive of each and every forecast, allowing search and analysis of historical data patterns
We play a key role in keeping communities in Wales safe from flooding. The flexibility and real-time performance which the Forecast Web Service offers is important to us in delivering a flood forecasting and warning service for Wales. Andrew How, Flood Forecasting Team Leader