University of South Florida

USF College of Marine Science


Tsunami sensing buoy recovered in Tampa Bay

Tsunami sensing buoy recovered in Tampa Bay

Written by: Carlyn Scott, Science Communication Assistant at USF CMS

An interdisciplinary group of scientists and engineers at USF developed a new type of buoy capable of detecting tiny changes in the ocean floor that can be precursors to large natural events such as tsunamis. The SUBBGEO (Shallow Underwater Buoy for Geodesy) team successfully deployed the 150-foot buoy off Egmont Key in 2018 to test its tsunami predicting prowess in shallow water, where small fluctuations are difficult to measure.

After a successful run, the buoy was recently recovered by USF and its partners, a collaborative effort to haul the 50,000-pound mechanism out of the bay so it may be disassembled on shore.

The three-year project was funded through the National Science Foundation’s Ocean Technology and Interdisciplinary Coordination (NSF-OTIC).

Read more about the buoy and its applications in previous articles published on the USF website.

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