Saildrone’s New Ocean Mapping HQ to Support Critical Florida Coastline Initiatives

Known for their 2021 groundbreaking video from inside a category 4 hurricane, Saildrone is broadening its efforts to keep coastal communities in the region safe.

(Mar 2, 2022 – ST. PETERSBURG, FL) – Today, Saildrone announced the opening of their new Ocean Mapping Headquarters and Operations Center in St. Petersburg, Florida. As the global leader in autonomous ocean data collection and comprehensive turnkey data solutions for maritime security, ocean mapping, and ocean data, the new location will significantly expand Saildrone’s presence in the US Southeast.

Situated in the new Maritime and Defense Technology Hub (Hub), part of the St. Petersburg Innovation District, the location will be a permanent deployment site for Saildrone missions.  Saildrone hopes to bring all the benefits of their proven technology and uncrewed surface vehicles (USVs) to support critical local initiatives like the Florida Coastal Mapping program whose mission is “accessible, high-resolution seabed data of Florida’s coastal waters to support infrastructure, habitat mapping, restoration projects, resource management, emergency response, and coastal resiliency and hazard studies for the citizens of Florida.”

“We are thrilled to announce our new Ocean Mapping Headquarters in St. Pete. New high-resolution maps of the seabed are essential to help Florida protect communities, grow its blue economy, and facilitate sustainable aquaculture & alternative energy,” said Saildrone founder and CEO Richard Jenkins. “Uncrewed systems can do far more, with far less investment than traditional approaches, so we are excited to play a role in bringing a brighter future to Florida.”

“According to the Florida Ocean Alliance, Florida’s Blue Economy in coastal counties generated more than $797 billion of economic value, or 77% of the state’s more than $1 trillion economy, in a single year,” said Saildrone Vice President for Ocean Mapping Brian Connon. “It is essential that this region is well understood and protected.”

 Saildrone has a strong interest in the region and made global headlines in September 2021 for capturing the world’s first video from inside a category 4 hurricane while collecting critical data to help scientists understand hurricane intensification. After demonstrating their capabilities with the world’s first autonomous ocean survey mission from San Francisco to Hawaii in July 2021, Saildrone is confident that modern ocean mapping and a better understanding of the landscape beneath the ocean will help protect human health and infrastructure. Saildrone also plans to deploy maritime security missions from the Hub, helping authorities tackle challenging issues on the water like illegal fishing, which cost the global economy billions each year, and the trafficking of drugs that are devastating communities across the nation.

About Saildrone

Navigating an Ocean of Data. Any Sensor. Anytime. Anywhere.

Saildrone is a US business that provides comprehensive turnkey data solutions for maritime security, ocean mapping, and ocean data. Services include autonomous data collection and using advanced sensors and machine learning technology to deliver real-time actionable maritime intelligence to customers. The company’s fleet of uncrewed surface vehicles (USVs), powered primarily by renewable wind and solar power giving them a minimal carbon footprint, are designed to make ocean intelligence cost-effective at scale. Saildrones operate 24/7/365, without the need for a crewed support vehicle, and have sailed over 500,000 nautical miles from the Arctic to the Antarctic and spent more than 15,000 days at sea in the harshest ocean conditions on the planet. 


Susan Ryan
Vice President Marketing
Cell: (314) 914-5008