There has been a growing demand for reliable information on the wave conditions, in particular at coastal sites, as a result of increased utilisation of the coastal zone to a multitude of activities including various shoreline developments related to transportation, tourism, fish farming and recently wind and wave energy industries. This trend is likely to continue. Reliable data is also needed with respect to the management and protection of these often fragile environments. Many of those concerned with these wave-impacted environments still use antiquated data sources, usually from offshore waters as, in the absence of long term wave data collected at the site of interest, the calculation of reliable wave statistics at a coastal site is a complicated, time consuming and expensive business, requiring various data sets to be assembled. WORLDWAVES simplifies and speeds up the modelling of wave conditions in coastal waters by integrating the following under a single Matlab toolbox: High quality long-term wave data offshore all global coasts; worldwide bathymetric and coastline data; SWAN and backward raytracing wave models; sophisticated offshore and nearshore wave statistics toolboxes with tabular and graphical presentations, including a facility to export ASCII time series data at offshore or inshore locations; a geographic module with easy zooming to any area worldwide; tools to set up model grids and display and edit bathymetry and coastline; a facility for the import of user offshore data and export of inshore time series data. In this paper we describe the design and implementation of WorldWaves including the fusion of satellite, model and buoy wave and wind data in the global offshore database and the new raytracing model.

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