February 28, 2018 – Sea Machines Robotics, a Boston-based developer of autonomous vessel technology, announced that it has hired Chris Sotzing, director of engineering. In the position, Sotzing has primary responsibility for ensuring the successful development and deployment of the company’s Sea Machines 300 technology system, as well as managing the engineering team. He now reports to COO Jim Daly from the Boston office.
The Sea Machines 300 is an industrial-grade control system to provide autonomous and remote vessel control for workboats and other commercial marine vessels. The technology is designed to provide an upgrade to standard vessel operations by enabling Direct Remote Command via joystick and Autonomous Command via PC interface, which pilots boats on preplanned or routine long-duration missions while providing real-time feedback to a local or remote operator. With this system, Sea Machines serves operations looking for full autonomy, as well as semi-autonomous solutions for applications in survey, spill response, dredging, and security/surveillance, optimizing safety, capability and predictability. The Sea Machines 300 system monitors surrounding traffic as well as a vessel’s position relative to Electronic Chart Display and Information System (ECDIS) equivalent charts to provide situational awareness to remote operators within line of sight or over the horizon.
Sotzing joined Sea Machines from SeeByte, where he served as an engineering manager supporting unmanned vehicle technologies in Boston. Prior to relocating to Boston, Sotzing held positions of increasing responsibility for nearly nine years at SeeByte in Edinburgh, Scotland, most recently serving as project manager for the Autonomous Inspection Vehicle (AIV) project, which had commercial application in deep-water inspections. He earned his Ph.D. in autonomous underwater vehicles from Heriot-Watt University, in Edinburgh, Scotland, and his undergraduate degree in computer science from Colby College, in Waterville, Maine.