Posted on August 18, 2023

Updated Information for Gulf of Maine Mapping Surveys

NOTE: In response to inquiries requesting clarification about upcoming Saildrone surveys, NOAA Fisheries has requested we share more information regarding this work to help inform those fishing and operating vessels in the area.

Two wind-propelled surface vehicles will be operating in the Gulf of Maine from August 28 through October 31, 2023. These vehicles are collecting high-resolution seafloor data to map the depth and habitat characteristics that are present.

These vehicles are not crewed. They operate independently around-the-clock under wind and power.


Saildrone vehicles travel relatively slowly at speeds of 2-4 knots and are designed to be highly visible. In addition to high visibility colors for daytime, they are equipped with bright navigation lights for nighttime awareness and a radar reflector.

Each vehicle will be operating in small portions of the total footprint, roughly 2.7 nm x 2.7 nm (5 km x 5 km) sections of the Gulf of Maine, on any given day. These vehicles are called Saildrone Voyagers.

For those who are interested in following this effort more closely, Saildrone has posted detailed information at:

This webpage includes:

  • Charts and survey coordinates for the full effort;
  • Updates on vehicle locations that are anticipated in the upcoming week as well as the longer-term; and
  • Areas that have been completed.

SAILDRONE GULF OF MAINE MISSION HOTLIINE: As the survey progresses, updates on Saildrone Voyager locations will be shared weekly via this webpage and the Saildrone Gulf of Maine mission hotline: (510) 980-6720.

SAILDRONE vehicles are equipped with radar, Automatic Identification Systems (AIS), and cameras. Vehicles are monitored remotely 24/7 by the Saildrone Mission Control Team.

SAILDRONE QUESTIONS: Questions should be directed to:
Saildrone Program Manager Kitch Kennedy at