Met Office

Met Office Space Weather System

Incomplete applications

Incomplete applications
1 SME, 4 large

Completed applications

Completed applications
4 SME, 4 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Wednesday 31 January 2018
Deadline for asking questions Wednesday 7 February 2018 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Wednesday 14 February 2018 at 11:59pm GMT


Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work Ongoing development of the Met Office Space Weather forecasting system and related customer/service delivery systems. Enhancements to the existing system including the introduction of new data inputs, models and forecast outputs as well as lifecycle improvements and re-platforming.
Latest start date Wednesday 25 April 2018
Expected contract length 2 years
Location South West England
Organisation the work is for Met Office
Budget range Approximately £800,000 over the duration of the contract.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done Space weather describes conditions in space that can interact with the Earth's upper atmosphere and magnetic field and disrupt our modern technology including power grids, radio communications and satellite operations including GPS.

The Met Office owns the UK space weather risk on behalf of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and as part of the National Risk Assessment mitigation strategy, delivers space weather services to government, critical national infrastructure (CNI) providers and the public.

This project is to enhance the existing Met Office space weather forecast systems and the services it delivers to customers.
Problem to be solved Development targets include:
1) Implementation of new scientific models and system functionality
2) Incorporation of new data sources
3) European Space Agency (ESA) Service improvements
4) Delivery of new forecast products
5) System changes and improved web analytics
6) Ongoing refining, planning, tracking, testing and operational support and documentation requirements
7) Compliance with Cyber security, MoD DCPP, GDPR, coding, release engineering and documentation standards
8) Re-platforming - Support analysis and proof of concept efforts to refactor and re-engineer existing Space Weather components
Who the users are and what they need to do • As a forecaster I need to interpret the data and model output in order to produce forecasts, alerts and warnings.
• As a CNI provider or government department I need to understand space weather to make operational decisions, mitigate business interruptions and ensure an effective response.
• As a commercial organisation I need to mitigate the impact of space weather to my operations
• As a scientific collaborator I want access to the latest space weather data and model output, to support scientific projects
• As a member of the public, I am interested in space weather and aurora
Early market engagement Not applicable
Any work that’s already been done Space weather was developed on the Met Office Ripple and WAVE (Web Application and Visualisation Engine) systems and has been in 24/7 operation since 2014. Ripple is used for creation, storage and dissemination of forecast products and services. It uses several web clients HTML5/CSS3 written primarily in Java script using the Dojo framework and includes a number of scientific models implemented in Python and IDL, displayed using Hicharts and animations. Forecast products, manual and automatically issued alerts are output in various formats via email, sftp, social media and via WAVE, which hosts the Met Office website and premium services.
Existing team There is currently a Met Office Product Owner, Solution Architect, Technical Lead, Project Manager and work is supported by a variety of internal technical teams. IT software development and testing is undertaken by the incumbent third party contractor. The Met Office has an internal security testing team as well as employing external agencies.
Current phase Live

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place Met Office, Exeter, Devon, EX1 3PB
The successful supplier will be required on-site at in Exeter during on-boarding of development team, software releases and for team meetings. After working relationships have been established, the work can be done remotely.
Working arrangements The development and testing team work only on Met Office laptops, providing flexibility to work in Met Office premises or remotely.

The whole team have daily ‘stand-up’ teleconferences with the Technical Lead and Project Manager and usually work at the Met Office for just one day every fortnight for team meetings. Individual members attend the Met Office as and when required to support the release of new functionality.

The Met Office uses Skype for Business and Webex to support communication with remote working teams.

Expenses will be capped in line with Met Office travel and subsistence policy.
Security clearance SC level required. (May start work with BC whilst completing SC clearance, which will be provided by the Met Office).

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions All expenses must be pre-agreed with between the parties and must comply with the Met Office Travel and Subsistence (T&S) Policy.
All suppliers are obliged to provide sufficient guarantees to implement appropriate technical and organisational measures so that the processing meets the requirements of GDPR and ensures the protection of the rights of data subjects.
For further information please see the Information Commissioner's Office website:

Skills and experience

Buyers will use the essential and nice-to-have skills and experience to help them evaluate suppliers’ technical competence.

Skills and experience
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Essential skills and experience
  • Developer or Business Analyst : (Reference level : SFIA 3 or 4)
  • Senior / Lead Developer: (Reference level : SFIA 5)
  • Java development inc IntelliJ, Apache Camel Routes, Hibernate and Spring
  • MongoDB database
  • Maven (software project management and comprehension tool)
  • Jenkins (continuous integration server)
  • Unit Testing /Web clients HTML5/CSS3/ Dojo Framework
  • Secure coding compliant with Cyber Essentials Plus
  • Understanding outputs from IT Health Checks and how to resolve vulnerabilities identified.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Amazon Web Services inc Step Functions and Lambda
  • Python inc Virtualenv, Python2, Python3 and Numpy
  • IDL
  • Hicharts
  • Docker (or other containerisation tool)
  • Migrating Java applications to AWS
  • Business Analyst skills for refining Agile stories
  • Knowledge transfer during and at the completion of contract

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 5
Proposal criteria
  • Relevant technical skills and experience of the team to undertake the work
  • Ability to flex developer, test and BA resources, manage changes so that disruption to quality and speed of service delivery is minimised.
  • Ability to meet security requirements including Cyber Essentials Plus, meet MoD DCPP requirements and best practises in delivery secure code so risks to space weather service delivery are minimised.
  • Demonstrable project management skills in Agile, Kanban and scrum, so that team can deliver work in a planned and organised manner and align with wider Met Office project delivery approaches.
  • Ability to work in partnership with the Met Office. e.g.Helping to establish success criteria, identify and address risks to and improve the efficiency of delivery.
  • Ability to work with Met Office established processes e.g. release management.
Cultural fit criteria
  • Good collaboration skills to work transparently with the Met Office as one team in a culture of continuous learning and improvement for the benefit of Met Office customers.
  • Ability to work well as a self-directed team, to design solutions, solve problems and maintain service delivery.
  • Good ability to communicate clearly with IT and non-IT specialisms to share their knowledge and experience with Met Office staff and other third parties.
Payment approach Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

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