Planet OS Releases an API for the World’s Weather and Climate Data

Planet OS is excited to announce the launch of our first API designed specifically for geospatial and Earth observation data. The Planet OS API provides developers, researchers, and climate specialists with easy access to a growing catalog of Earth data from the world's most respected providers. Using the Planet OS API, it is now possible to build scalable applications and data-driven solutions without developing custom interfaces for each individual dataset.

Weather and climate data is traditionally difficult to work with at scale. Data are typically buried in undocumented repositories that are hard to navigate, published in obscure scientific formats, and are often so large that downloading them can take hours. The Planet OS API allows users to access only the data they actually need, without having to download the entire dataset. Most importantly, because any dataset within the Planet OS catalog can be accessed using the same API, the code is portable and reusable.

Starting today API users can freely access three global forecast models – NOAA WaveWatch III, NCEP Global Forecast System (GFS), and HYCOM Global Ocean Forecast. Through a mixture of automated discovery, user recommendation, and manual curation, we will continuously expand and update our catalog of available datasets. This includes not only open datasets, but commercial data as well. Planet OS is currently working with a select group of data vendors, including CustomWeather, The Climate Source, Weather Decision Technologies, and Freese-Notis Weather to bring their products to our platform.

Progressive organizations and governments exposed to environmental risk realize the benefit of including weather and climate data in their decision support systems and risk analyses. However specialists and data scientists tasked with performing these assessments typically spend 80% of their time finding, accessing and preparing data, not analyzing it.

By streamlining data acquisition and transformation, to ensure data is available when it's needed and delivered in the appropriate format, Planet OS allows data scientists to focus their time on actual analysis, instead of building data infrastructure. Improved data access benefits the $376 Billion Geospatial Services market as a whole, helping businesses in agriculture, insurance, energy, and other industries to operate more efficiently and responsibly.

"Improving the accessibility of climate and Earth science data is a key component of our work at OpenNEX," shares Dr. Sangram Ganguly, Developer and founder of the Open NASA Earth Exchange Platform and a senior research scientist at the Bay Area Environmental Research Institute. "Having simple, intuitive interfaces is critical for fully realizing the value of NASA's data assets. The Planet OS API allows researchers, developers, and citizen scientists to easily engage with the data and contribute innovative ideas and solutions to the global community.”

Planet OS has been working with large-scale geospatial sensor data since 2012 when it first launched Marinexplore, an open data portal for ocean datasets. Since then Planet OS has collaborated with tens of large enterprises such as RWE and Bravante, and government agencies such as NOAA and NASA, solving data access and decision support problems. We share Al Gore's vision of a D​igital Earth and are excited to contribute to improving the world's access to environmental data through this public API release.

We invite everyone who works with weather and climate data to visit h​ttps://data.planetos.com and try the Planet OS API. The service is free of charge with up to 500 API calls per day and 5GB data transfer per month. Organizations, institutions and commercial data vendors who are interested in publishing their data products on Planet OS are encouraged to contact us at d​ata@planetos.com.​ 

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