Saildrone – Lead Surveyor (Ocean)

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Job Description

Saildrone is seeking an experienced, certified hydrographer responsible for the management of all tasks for the assigned survey(s). Supervises all team members in the performance of their duties including data QA/QC, equipment setup/calibration, data acquisition, data processing, equipment maintenance, and production of final deliverables/report. Lead Hydrographer is the final certifying signature that the survey has been completed according to the specifications set out in the contract.

Role Responsibilities

As a Lead Hydrographer – Ocean, your primary responsibilities will include direct oversight of bathymetric surveys, including survey line planning, mission preparation, mission execution, training of survey watchstanders, and successful completion of surveys. Additional responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:

  • Coordinating and directing contracted survey watchstanders in their roles and responsibilities.
  • Communicating with customers and applicable Saildrone personnel regarding the status of the survey, troubleshooting and resolving issues to ensure schedules are maintained.
  • Providing daily survey updates in the Saildrone Mission Log for the team and customers
  • Serving as a member of a collaborative team for development and testing of new vehicles, sensors and procedures
  • Working with Bathymetry Technical Program Manager, Bathymetry Operations Manager and Bathymetry Data Manager to ensure mission success
  • Keeping up to date on latest IHO and national data standards and survey procedures

Required Skills

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in Hydrography, Oceanography, Geomatics, Remote Sensing or related discipline
  • 5 or more years experience leading hydrographic/bathymetric survey teams as lead surveyor
  • 5 or more years of experience processing bathymetric/hydrographic data with Qimera or CARIS
  • Familiarity with Kongsberg multibeam systems and Seafloor Information System
  • Familiarity with acquisition software such as HYPACK or Qinsy
  • Possess excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Highly detailed/organized
  • Keeping up to date on latest IHO and national data standards and survey procedures
  • Interest and passion for new technology applications for ocean mapping

Desired Skills And Abilities

  • Category A Hydrographer Certification
  • NSPS-THSOA Certified Hydrographer
  • Licensed as a Professional Land Surveyor or Engineer
  • Experience using uncrewed surface vehicles or other autonomous systems for survey operations

Location: This position is remote friendly. Only candidates with proper permits to work in the United States can be considered.


  • Medical, dental and vision plans for you and your dependents.
  • Active sailing classes: become a certified skipper on boats up to 35ft! (once COVID safety allows)
  • Short and relaxing ferry ride from the Ferry Building for SF residents
  • Enhanced paternity / maternity programs
  • Competitive benefits including excellent medical, discounted gym, life insurance, 401k plan

Catch up on the latest news about us:

  • Who is going to map the high seas? (Hydro International Aug 2021)
  • Saildrones are mapping the oceans (CNET May 2021)
  • Gulfstream (April 2021)
  • Saildrone Surveyor Launch (Jan 2021)
  • Four autonomous vessels sailed the Arctic to more precisely map its seafloor(Oct 2020)
  • Coast Guard Begins At-Sea Testing of Unmanned Surface Vehicles to Tackle Illegal Fishing, Crime (Oct 2020)
  • Five Ways Saildrone’s ‘Satellites Of The Seas’ Could Transform Mauritius Oil Spill Response (Sept 2020)
  • Due to COVID-19, NOAA Uses Drones Instead of Ships for Fishery Survey (June 2020)
  • Or watch some of our videos: Bloomberg: The Robots Roaming the High Seas

    We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

    In accordance with Saildrone’s mandatory employee COVID-19 vaccination policy, please be advised that all employees are required to be vaccinated to safeguard the health of our employees and their families, our customers and visitors and the community at large.