MarsKeel Powers Saildrone’s Historic Transatlantic Voyage

Saildrone (SD 1021), the world’s first unmanned surface vessel (USV), made use of MarsKeel’s unique lead ballast system to complete its record-breaking 3,402-nautical mile transatlantic voyage.

Engineered to withstand the harshest ocean conditions on the planet, the Saildrone successfully traversed wind gusts of 58 knots (107 km/h), and 40-foot high waves during its two-way expedition that began in Newport in January 2019.

The vessel took just 75 days to complete the first leg of its expedition from Bermuda to the Solent, and 68 days to complete its return journey, making it the world’s first autonomous vehicle to transit in both directions across the Atlantic Ocean.

Saildrone’s Mission

Saildrone was armed with an array of custom sensors, and real-time data was transmitted via satellite for analysis with the researcher in constant control of the mission. Saildrone missions have included oceanography and climate studies, fish stock analysis, and environmental monitoring.

For information about Saildrone, click here.

MarsKeel Makes People, Technology, And Passion Combine

At MarsKeel Technology, we pride ourselves on the range of keel-related services and solutions we offer our customers. With over 100 years of combined experience in the casting and marine industries, we customize our solutions to fit your requirements.

Our custom keel services include:

  • Full engineering and design support
  • Access to two the finest Naval Architects in the industry
  • Full project management from design to delivery for small to supper yacht projects
  • In-house manufacturing design (tooling and fixturing)
  • In-house pattern production
  • Lead casting capacity up to 100,000 kgs
  • Full CNC machining services for bulbs & keel fins (fabricated and cast), custom material fasteners, and casting fixtures
  • Custom packaging of any size, going anywhere in the world
  • Shipping from our facility to the customer, anywhere.

Our two-way communication model with our customers ensures that they are aware of developments throughout the production stage. This allows for a well planned and executed project, from the first contact to final delivery.

For additional information about MarsKeel’s state-of-the-art technology, click here


MarsKeel is North America’s largest keel manufacturer, supplying keels to the top production yacht builders and offering repair and modification services for over 35 years. Contact us today for your keel production, repair, and modification needs.