P18250: Smart Buoy


Project Summary Project Information

A ‘Smart Buoy’ is a small autonomous marine vehicle that can be controlled by a user to navigate to GPS coordinates and has the ability to maintain the desired location. There are many industrial, commercial, scientific, and recreational applications for this technology; however, for sailing specifically, there is a frequent need to adjust buoy locations as prevailing winds shift throughout a day of racing. Currently in the sport, the race committee must send boats out to manually adjust buoy locations which is time consuming and labor intensive.

The goal of this project will be to develop a prototype of a ‘smart buoy’ specifically for sailboat racing, as well as develop a technology and concepts that can be applied to other autonomous marine vehicle applications. The resulting prototype must be durable and able to operate for an entire day of racing, withstand environmental and surface conditions, be easy to control and set up, and follow coast guard laws and regulations.

Project Name
Smart Buoy
Project Number
Start Term
End Term
Faculty Guide
Mark Indovina, George Slack
Primary Customer
Mike Ritenour and Glenn Steed
Mike Ritenour and Glenn Steed (equipment donations)
Boeing through MSD ($900)
MSD ($500)

Team Members

Team “Yeah Buoy”

Team “Yeah Buoy”

Role Member Major Contact
Project Manager Chad Kratina ME cak8395@rit.edu
Lead Mechanical Engineer Matthew Bartlow ME mxb6312@rit.edu
Lead Electrical Engineer (2nd Semester) Colin Bussert EE cb9290@rit.edu
EDGE Coordinator Jacob Klassen CE jgk8960@rit.edu
Lead Electrical Engineer (1st Semester) Xavier Tarr EE xwt6090@g.rit.edu
Procurement Abdul Rahim Al Ali EE ama8220@rit.edu
Team Facilitator Matthew Cmelko ME mjc7378@rit.edu
Electrical Engineer Suleman Ullah EE snu4242@rit.edu

Work Breakdown: By Phase


Planning & Execution

Project Photos and Videos

Imagine RIT

Gate Reviews

Problem Definition

Systems Design

Preliminary Detailed Design

Detailed Design

Build & Test Prep

Subsystem Build & Test

Integrated System Build & Test

Customer Handoff & Final Project Documentation (Verification & Validation)