Wave Machine

Real-time sea wave data streamed from a marine observation buoy is transformed into an evolving electronic soundscape.

Using the Pure Data (Pd) programming platform, measurements including wave height, periodicity, direction and sea temperature are used to control different parameters of electronically generated sounds – volume, pitch, duration, timbre, and position within the stereo field. The buoy records data every 30 minutes and is received by Pd through a live internet connection.

Wave Machine was created for Profound Sound Festival 2020, using data from a buoy at Folkestone, and exhibited in a shipping container on Folkestone Harbour Arm, with over 200 visitors to the installation across the weekend.

An experimental live broadcast of Wave Machine was aired online on 27th March 2020.

Wave Machine was also exhibited as part of the ‘sonic trail’ at Ramsgate Festival of Sound¬†using data from a buoy at Goodwin Sands.

Data supplied by the Channel Coastal Observatory.
Photos of the Folkestone buoy by Fugro GB Marine Ltd. and Channel Coastal Observatory. Used with permission.