Photo: Scott Reed, CTO of SeeByte presenting alongside Ben Kinemann at the Canadian MCM Symposium (Courtesy of Greensea Systems)

US-UK duo teams up to usher in new era in subsea robotics systems

Greensea Systems, a U.S.-based marine robotics technology specialist, and UK’s SeeByte, a provider of software solutions to uncrewed systems, have joined forces to accelerate the adoption of subsea robotic systems in the commercial marine sphere, including the offshore energy industry.

Illustration (Courtesy of Greensea Systems)

According to Greensea Systems, the two companies are working together to provide advanced autonomy and sensor processing solutions that complement each other and push the cutting-edge of underwater robotics.

Greensea explained that the tetherless ROV will feature Greensea Autonomy built in EOD workspace, and SeeByte AI/ML Sensor processing with their forward-looking sonar ATR.

U.S. mines countermeasures (MCM) and explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) defense units will not be the only ones to bear fruits of this integration, as the resulting vehicle perception, over-the-horizon command and control, and mission-level (ML) and AI automatic target recognition (ATR) pipeline will also be available in the new commercially available OPENSEA Edge system from Greensea and the ATR system from SeeByte, the company added.

Much like the development of many autonomous maritime systems, the initial funding that enabled fast-paced roll-out came from the military, but the rest of the undersea industry now gets to benefit.

Ben Kinnaman, CEO at Greensea, said: “Thanks to defense funding, and our willingness to enter into partnerships such as the one here with SeeByte, OPENSEA products will accelerate the viability, reduce the risk and cost, and increase the uptake of subsea autonomy in the commercial marine sphere. The more rapid development of capabilities such as tetherless, over-the-horizon operation, enhanced object recognition and mission-based AI will provide a huge boost in slower autonomy-adopting industries, such as offshore energy and ocean science.”

The two companies first came together in 2021 to field explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) solution under a DoD other transaction agreement (OTA) led by the defense innovation Unit (DIU).

In the last two years, the partnership has grown to the point that Greensea and SeeByte are presenting complementary concepts.

“I have had a long history with Greensea Systems. First, I was a customer of theirs at SeaBotix. Then I became a competitor to them in my early days with SeeByte. Now, I am proud to partner with them to advance cutting-edge underwater robotics technology. Autonomy and advanced sensor processing go hand in hand. The tetherless ROV technology that we are building together under DIU will be game-changing,” said Leverett Bezanson, SeeByte Engineering Manager for US operations.

In June 2022, Greensea Systems launched Bayonet Ocean Vehicles, a new company created to develop, manufacture, and distribute a line of amphibious robots recently acquired from C-2 Innovations.