This fireside chat recap is from FreightWaves’ DroneWaves Summit.

FIRESIDE CHAT TOPIC: The role of underwater drones in the supply chain

DETAILS: Diving into the deep with a look at uses for underwater drones from shipwrecks to science 

SPEAKER: Sam Macdonald, president of Deep Trekker Inc.

BIO: In 2010, Macdonald co-founded Deep Trekker aiming to bring underwater robotics to the world. Today, the company operates a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility and coordinates shipments to over 100 countries.


“Underwater drones were around before aerial drones were even a thing. Remotely operated vehicles have been in the water since the 1960s. We didn’t really come into fame until the aerial drones made people aware that there were these robots running all over the ground, in the air and in the water.”

“I really wanted to make remotely operated vehicles that were really simple out of the box, easy to use. I thought it would be picked up by boaters, maybe by police search and rescue. What I didn’t envision is that there would be legions of Deep Trekker drones deployed around the world in over 100 countries working in everything from space research, environmental research, oil and gas energy, wind energy and solar fish farms.”

“Maritime shipping is one of our most important growth industries — for doing those underwater inspections. Instead of taking these enormous ships out of the water, can we do these inspections without taking them out? It’s easier than ever now to use remotely operated vehicles to do that.”

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