Basic Observation Buoy

Please note this classroom activity was developed in 2010. While it remains an effective educational resource, the costs and availability of sensors have changed since development.

Buoys hold sensors that are our real-time eyes on the water. The data they transmit can improve weather forecasts, provide real-time information on current sea conditions and increase accuracy for storm track and storm surge inundation models.

The Basic Observation Buoy (BOB) classroom activity teaches you how to make your own buoy!

Build Your Own Buoy

Manual for Building a Buoy

Basic Observation Buoy Documents

Title Link
Manual for Building a Basic Observation Buoy View
Sensor Suggestions (Developed in 2010) View
Building Buoys for Observing and STEM Education (August 17, 2009 MTS-IEEE Oceans Conference Proceedings) View
Guide to the Elementary Basic Observation Buoy View
Build-A-Buoy Activity for Kindergarteners View


SECOORA has supported three workshops to promote and extend coastal ocean observing information, technology and societal benefits using a scaled down, but operational, “Basic Observation Buoy (BOB).”

BOB III Workshop – 2010

BOB II Workshop – 2010

BOB I Workshop – 2009