Dredging Industry



Quick Links

  • Remote helm control
  • Remote payload control

Above features, plus:

  • Autonomous command
  • Waypoint following and mission planning
  • Collaborative vessel operations
  • Autonomous surveillance path execution
  • Minimally manned and unmanned configurations
  • Obstacle detection and avoidance

Product Comparison: SM300 vs. SM200 (.PDF)


Scheduled for release in 2020, our SM400 system will provide advanced perception and situational awareness capabilities to vessels.

Autonomous-Control and Advanced-Perception Systems
For Dredgers and Related Workboats

Available now, Sea Machines’ vessel intelligence systems install aboard existing or new-build dredges – including trailing suction hopper dredgers (TSHDs) and water injection dredgers (WIDs) – to increase their productivity and predictability, while reducing their overall risk and operational costs.

Capabilities & Use Cases

Autonomous Command

Shoreside or nearby operators can execute autonomous missions, with or without crew on board. Lower-cost, minimally manned or unmanned configurations increase safety by eliminating or  reducing the need for humans to be on board and exposed to challenging environments.

Sea Machines automates tedious, redundant and dangerous tasks, allowing an on-board crew to focus on higher-level operations.

Operational incidents can be prevented with obstacle detection and collision avoidance capabilities built on computer vision, radar, AIS and GPS data. Sea Machines helps to reduce operator fatigue, a major casualty factor in marine incidents during nighttime operations, long-distance transfers and challenging sea states.

Autonomous missions can be saved and reused for future efficiency.

Remote Helm Operations

For operators who use tugboats for the positioning of dredge barges, Sea Machines adds efficiencies by providing crews with remote helm control capability of tugs from shoreside locations or nearby vessels. When such tugboats are remotely controlled from backhoe operator stations or elsewhere, operators can reduce or eliminate tugboat crews. In addition to eliminating the back-and-forth communication between two vessels, this reduced-crew/unmanned feature lowers capital expenses and additionally removes personnel from the risks associated with dredge operations.

Vessels can be operated from outside of the wheelhouse to provide greater visibility.

Collaborative Autonomy

Autonomous marine technology lets a single, shore-based operator command and control an entire unmanned fleet of dredgers or tugboats, creating a force-multiplier effect.

Unmanned or minimally manned collaborative autonomous vessels reduce the resources required and don’t require stop-work periods or shift changes, helping to reduce operational costs.

Grid Path Autonomy for Repetitive Routes

The majority of operational incidents in the marine industry can be traced to human errors related to fatigue, distraction or boredom. Grid path autonomy eliminates the need for mariners to manually execute tedious and repetitive paths.

Sea Machines’ systems automate the survey work that is often required before and after a dredge operation is executed.

Computerized route planning yields greater productivity and increased predictability.

Unmanned, autonomous vessels improve the speed and accuracy of repeating paths.

SM200 product image

Remote Payload Control

An off-site operator can remotely activate and control on-board equipment, such as pumps and sensors. This means that nearshore river, lake and coastal dredging projects can be conducted by shoreside crews, while deeper-water projects can be conducted safely and securely from a mothership.

Live camera feeds and other provide operators with a real-time view of onboard equipment and operations for monitoring throughout the project.

Payloads can be engaged from outside of the wheelhouse to provide greater visibility.

Remote Vessel Monitoring

From a shoreside location or second vessel, Sea Machines enables operators to monitor the operations and progress of working vessels in real time, anywhere there is a network connection.

This “on-watch redundancy” can help to prevent operational incidents and keep crews safer.

Human operators can command and control fleets of unmanned vessels with greater efficiency and reduced operational cost.

Advanced Perception & Situational Awareness

Slated for release in 2020, a coming Sea Machines system will use Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) to improve at-sea situational awareness, object identification and tracking capabilities.

Using advanced sensors to collect a continuous stream of information from a vessel’s environmental surroundings, this system will identify and track potential conflicts, and efficiently displays the data in the wheelhouse. Offering advantages in the Identification of Friend or Foe (IFF), this sensor fusion will provide a target’s name and flag, speed, course and more to an on-board or on-shore operator, enabling faster classification of the approaching object as safe, suspicious or a threat.

Proof of Performance

“In conjunction with Sea Machines, we have developed a turn-key autonomous production model to be kept in our regular stock rotation and available for near-immediate delivery. We’re bringing autonomy to market in a ready form that operators can buy today and run tomorrow.” — Chris Allard, Metal Shark

Sea Machines is now offering government customers a commercially available 29-foot autonomous vessel, made possible by Metal Shark’s “Sharktech” autonomous division. The system allows for traditionally manned, reduced-crew or unmanned autonomous operations to deliver “human-in-the-loop” navigation. Learn more.

Contact us

Contact a member of the Sea Machines team to discuss your specific needs.