The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration's National Data Buoy Center at Stennis Space Center organized and recently hosted a three-day workshop for wave experts from North America, Central America and the Caribbean.
The workshop goals included enabling the participating countries to establish, expand or improve their national capabilities in ocean wave measurements, which are critical for safety of navigation and weather forecasts and warnings. Coastal Mississippi has long witnessed the destructive power of ocean waves during severe weather events highlighted by NDBC buoys measuring and reporting 55-foot wave height in the Gulf of Mexico during Hurricane Katrina.
NDBC has been a pioneer in ocean wave measurements for more than 40 years. The buoys are designed and built at NDBC's facility at Stennis. In 2011, NDBC's expertise and leadership were recognized by the World Meteorological Organization and the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO when they were selected as a Regional Marine Instrumentation Centre for WMO Region IV of North America, Central America, and the Caribbean.