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Blog Autonomous Systems Keep the Screws Turning on Daughter Craft

February 7, 2018

Sea Machines’ 1st generation of autonomous technology empowers open-water daughter craft to do much more. Daughter craft are workboats or utility craft that support a mothership. Common operations performed by daughter craft are: bathymetric or hydrographic surveys, search & rescue, oil spill response, seismic operations, fishing fleet support, and security escort. Our system enables:

  • Unmanned Uninterrupted Operations – Most daughter craft lack onboard crew accommodations and there is complete reliance on the mothership for crew facilities and support. Crew care and shift change can cause a 25% loss in operational productivity. A SEA MACHINES 300 system enables unmanned vessel self-piloting with a remote “man-in-the-loop” via an operator station positioned on the mothership. Keep the screws turning with less down time.
  • Predictable Tracking – Many support tasks, from surveys to oil boom towing, rely on accurate vessel tracking. Direct human control is inherently unpredictable when it comes to long duration tracking, meaning hours-to-days accurately following a planned course, even with auto-pilot (steering systems). The SEA MACHINES 300 system reduces downtime by accurately maintaining course be it on a grid survey or collaborative multi-vessel tracking operations.
  • Risk Reduction – Vessel-to-vessel transfer is often the most dangerous task performed at sea. Conventional daughter craft rely on fresh crew every 6 to 8 hrs, meaning lots of over-the-rail transfers from the mothership. The SEA MACHINES 300 system keeps the operators safely aboard the mothership.
  • Night Operations – Many daughter craft operators have opted to reduce risk to personnel by eliminating vessel operations in the dark. Depending on latitude and season, these rules can void as much as 70% of operating time. The SEA MACHINES 300 system keeps the screws turning day or night via a remote operator.