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JCOMM Voluntary Observing Ship Scheme

Welcome to Voluntary Observing Ship (VOS) website. This website is primarily a resource for national VOS Program Managers and Port Meteorological Officers (PMOs), but it is also intended to provide an overview of the international VOS Scheme to ship owners, ship agents, Masters and crew members interested in joining the scheme.

» VOS Scheme

The VOS Scheme is an international program comprising member countries of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) that recruit ships to take, record and transmit weather observations whilst at sea.

Since 1999, the marine activities of WMO, as well as those of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, have been coordinated by the Joint WMO/IOC Technical Commission for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM).

The VOS Scheme is a core observing program of the Ship Observations Team (SOT) in the Observations Programme Area of JCOMM.


» More about the VOS Scheme.

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» VOSClim

VOS Climate Fleet logoThe VOS Climate (VOSClim) Fleet is a class of reporting ship within the VOS Scheme that aims to provide a high-quality subset of VOS data in real-time and also in delayed-mode, supplemented by an extensive array of metadata, to support global climate studies and research. The data in particular will be used to:

  • Input directly into air-sea flux computations, as part of coupled atmosphere-ocean climate models;
  • Provide ground truth for calibrating satellite observations; and
  • Provide a high quality reference data set for possible re-calibration of observations from the entire VOS.

» More about VOSClim.

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» Port Meteorological Officers

PMO logoPort Meteorological Officers (PMOs) are a vital component of the VOS Scheme. PMOs are responsible for recruiting ships into, and maintaining the national Voluntary Observing Fleet (VOF), as well as servicing ships from other national VOF that may call at their port.

PMOs are also becoming increasingly involved in supporting complementary and supplementary national, regional or international marine meteorological or oceanographic programs.


» More about Port Meteorological Officers.

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