ECMWF case study

Satellite picture from ECMWF presicitng severe weather warningsEasy access to Interoute’s Global MPLS Network means clear skies ahead.

The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF) is a world leader in medium-range numerical weather prediction forecasting. It uses advanced computer modelling techniques to analyse observations and predict future weather.

Forecasts are produced and sent out twice daily to national meteorological services for their use.

To support the service levels and performance ECMWF needs to deliver products to over 50 countries in support of operational forecasts used by millions every day, it needed a provider with a global reach.


The challenge

ECMWF’s Regional Meteorological Data Communications Network connects meteorological agencies worldwide, enabling them to exchange and disseminate weather related data for forecasting purposes. The existing ECMWF IPVPN was due a technical and commercial refresh, to provide overall cost reductions, an increase in performance and the ability to provide data to the widest possible set of locations. ECMWF’s network is mission-critical, being used in the support of early warning systems for severe weather around the globe.


The solution

Interoute developed a solution which addressed the customer’s requirements for a future-proof and scalable MPLS network to be delivered globally yet supported centrally, offering multiple levels of access and diversity to each regional agency. A dedicated team spanning commercial, technical, legal and project management was put into place to proactively resolve any changes or new requests and ensure that decisions are taken quickly to avoid delays.


“We undertook a detailed vendor selection and RFP process, taking our time to examine the global telecoms market to ensure that we picked a vendor who could provide, support and manage our network which is critical, not just to us, but to our partner meteorological and hydrological agencies and services around the world. During this process we were impressed by the ability of Interoute staff to deliver on our requirements and propose innovative solutions. We felt confident in Interoute due to the stability of its network across EMEA and beyond, its excellent reputation in the Enterprise market and the dedicated focus Interoute provided – and continues to provide us.”

Oliver Gorwits, Head of Networks & Computer Security, ECMWF


The results

Increasing numbers of regional meteorological agencies can now connect to ECMWF’s network and can do so with multiple access methods, varying levels of diversity and with a clearly defined SLA for each agency. The expanding MPLS network already connects over 50 countries across the US, Europe, APAC, Middle East and Africa facilitating more efficient exchange of weather observations and forecast data, imperative for airlines, shipping, research and technology institutions. ECMWF has experienced a significant reduction in operational costs, enabling higher speeds for partners on the network without increasing costs.


Looking ahead
ECMWF will be expanding its global network further to connect more regional agencies with the Interoute platform over the next six years. ECMWF will also be investigating further integration with the Interoute platform through Interoute’s Unified Communications and Unified Computing suite of services.
ECMWF is an intergovernmental organisation established by a Convention that came into force on 1 November 1975. The Centre has 20 Member States and has co-operation agreements with another 14 States (Co-operating States). It is both a research institute and a 24/7 operational service producing and disseminating global numerical weather predictions and other data to its Member and Co-operating States. The Centre also offers a catalogue of forecast data that can be purchased by businesses worldwide and other commercial customers. Other strategic activities include maintaining a data archive, assistance in advanced education and assistance to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in implementing its programmes. The supercomputer facility (and associated data archive) at ECMWF is one of the largest of its type in Europe. ECMWF is based in Reading, UK.

 ECMWF case study (PDF)


For more information about the services that Interoute offers in these areas please visit our VPN and Cloud Services pages.