As the mapping community continues to work towards a fully-mapped ocean by 2030, our methods for data acquisition must become more efficient and cost effective.  Saildrone Surveyor is the first uncrewed surface vehicle to map the deep ocean remotely, as demonstrated by a round trip from California to Hawaii in the summer of 2021, mapping 50,000 square kilometers
of seafloor while under sail.  Surveyor’s endurance is linked to the ability to utilize the wind for propulsion–creating not only an efficient platform, but also an environmentally sustainable one.  Surveyor can be underway for months at a time without the need for human intervention–collecting data in the deep sea continuously like no other vessel.

This efficiency in Saildrone’s capability in bathymetric survey planning, acquisition and monitoring is largely attributed to the in-house tools developed by Saildrone.  Having a centralized portal hosting common survey data and tools makes it easy for all participants to view and interact with the survey.  Participants include those who interact with the vehicle controls, software, data acquisition and planning, such as mission managers, surveyors, customers and engineers, all of which are remote to the drone.  Participants can view near real-time vehicle statistics, meteorological, oceanographic and sonar data, as well as bathymetric coverage.  Surveyors have the ability to monitor the vehicle’s progress from any device, anywhere in the world. Survey line plans can be drawn directly alongside global grids and other imported bathymetric data, iterated by the surveyors, reviewed by the customers, and sent to the drone for updated routing to ensure the appropriate coverage is maintained during an active survey.  Customers are then able to observe the survey progress and data quality on-the-fly throughout the mission. This capability will lead to a more automated approach to data collection, as well as the ability to effectively map the gaps of the deep sea.



Colleen Peters

Colleen has spent most of her professional career collecting and managing scientific data.  As a Senior Survey Technician for NOAA, and a Lead Marine Technician for Schmidt Ocean Institute and OceanX, she has a breadth of experience with all types of data, collected with a variety of instrumentation and platforms.  She joined Saildrone in 2021, after graduating from the University of Rhode Island with a Masters in Oceanography and a Masters in Business Administration in 2019.  In her current role, Colleen will play an integral role in developing the data pipeline for the collection of bathymetry data on Saildrone Surveyor and Voyager class unmanned survey vehicles.






Isobel Cave

As a Senior Product Manager for Saildrone, Isobel is responsible for designing controls, interfaces, and workflows that enable users to visualize data collected via USVs, change USV settings, and make piloting decisions.  She joined Saildrone in 2019 after working in product management at Walmart eCommerce and the UK Government.  She holds an MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics, and a BA in English Literature from Durham University.