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A Look under the Surface: BlueEye Robotics Gives Underwater Surveillance a Great Name


In today’s age, it is no surprise that robots can assist in everyday and business chores. Technology is at a state where everything is possible with a push of a button. All these advances in humanity would be worthwhile if and when used for a greater cause.

More than half of the ocean world is unexplored. Interested in using advanced technology to examine the places men cannot yet reach, Christine Spiten created BlueEye Robotics, a platform with a keen eye for below-the-water-surface living.

A great chunk of the ocean was not yet explored before BlueEye Robotics. BlueEye Robotics is a technology-engineering company that allows marine-enthusiasts to explore the oceans’ depths via AI-boosted underwater drones. With these drones, open waters worldwide can be inspected in depth - from pollution and contamination levels, to existing or jeopardized flora, fauna, and more!

Christine’s love for the ocean took a business turn somewhere down the line - here’s how the inventor gave BlueEye Robotics an existentially essential purpose.

Nature Meets Technology

Christine Spiten was born on March 20, 1990, in Norway. As a young girl, Christine was always fascinated by robotics. At the time, most of the toys she would keep busy with were battery-operated. Thanks to her drive and intelligence, Christine would grow a deep love for repairing objects which could serve a better cause.

Aside from brains, Christine was an empathetic soul as well. In fact, her parents always thought of her as caring and nurturing, someone who always put others’ needs first. Christine spent most of her childhood surrounded by water and her fascination with the ocean led her to try her water sports talents.

Professionally, from very early on, Christine knew she wanted to be an engineer and pursue a career in the field. However, that career path had to be put on hold as Christine decided to dedicate her efforts to her water sports competition. In 2007, her efforts paid off and she became Norway's sailing champion, which was a very proud moment for Christine and her family.

Even though her younger years were mainly dedicated to sailing, Christine never discarded her interest in rising technology. In fact, she continued her college years at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, where she ultimately acquired a Master's degree in Industrial Technology and Management.

It was during the late 2000s that Christine acquired a lot of knowledge in technology building and decided to combine it with her love for the underwater world and environment.

Fed up with the growing plastic waste beaches and open water bodies suffering, Christine decided to not only do something about it - but get to the biggest ocean depths to assess the problems at hand.

Under the Sea

Christine’s determination to make the underwater environment safe for marine life was what made the project so successful and mission-driven. Inspired by the power of underwater drones and their repertoire of functions, Christine decided to, again, enroll at college - this time, the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro - and earn her second degree in underwater robotics.

This was the necessary nudge that Christine needed to fulfill her lifelong dream of exploring and saving the Earth’s waters. Christine wanted to inspect the extent of rubbish in all underwater depths, mostly because it could inevitably hurt the underwater food chain.

The drones used for underwater surveillance looked like they had eyes, which later on became the inspiration for her company, BlueEye Robotics.

To successfully build a startup, Christine decided to study International Entrepreneurship in California. This way, she was able to help the environment from both an ecological and a technical aspect. It was at University that Christine met Erik Dyrkoren, the other pioneer in the world of underwater surveillance.

Erik shared Christine’s passion for Earth’s blue surfaces and encouraged her idea of developing underwater drones. Aptly named as BlueEye Robotics, these drones would tend to every open water body type, inspect them and keep a watchful eye on their status.

Eyes Fixed Forward

In 2015, Christine Spiten alongside Erik Drykoren, Martin Ludvigsen, and Erik Haugane co-founded BlueEye Robotics, an underwater drone tool producer. All co-founders shared a dream of democratizing the ocean spaces and making them accessible to people. At the company, Erik Dryden worked with SINTEF Oceans and Martin ran a Centre for Autonomous Marine Operations.

The drones have cameras inserted within, and thanks to these, the undiscovered ocean depths are brought one step closer to explorers and scientists.

The underwater drones help discover new species, reduce tons of plastic rubbish, and clean up tainted waters. BlueEye Robotics covered dam inspections, agriculture, wastewater, drinking water management, data collecting, ship inspections, and tourism. Initially, the founders’ idea was to serve the Norwegian home market.

However, due to the platform’s sudden jolt to popularity, BlueEye Robotics managed to expand its clientele across 40 countries globally.

A Blue Eye for Robotics

Christine’s career with BlueEye seemed to go smoothly at first, though it wasn’t without its downfalls. BlueEye Robotics was not as successful as everyone thought, since Christine, Erik, and Martin all had to fight hard to secure a place among the top underwater surveillance competitors.

There was not much competition when it came to the underwater-drone building. However, the lack of financial support was one of the challenges that BlueEye had to face.

By being fairly ambitious, Christine and the co-founders managed to get full support for examining the ocean depths. Connecting with like-minded people from across the world is exactly what the team needed. Many people throughout the world wanted to invest time and energy into exploring the ocean depths, and thus improving the ecosystem. The main focus was on no more plastic, loads of rubbish, and dead sea creatures into the ocean. Thanks to their restless efforts, the team managed to provide new levels of underwater software, robotics, and mechanics.

The cherry on top, Christine also became among the first marine explorers that helped discover the connection between marine pollution and human health. What the sea creatures consume is what the population consumes, and someone had to put a stop to that. Christine contributed to this discovery during a research expedition to which she bought and used the BlueEye Robotics prototype.

In January 2019, BlueEye Robotics had raised $10 million for further development and had grown to 26 employees. The BlueEye team counts 20 marine experts from different countries working on different types of software.

BlueEye has headquarters in Oslo and Trondheim, Norway. Its main purpose is to enforce seabed mapping, monitor ocean applications, carry out marine biology research, and assist the shipping industry with real-time intel on the oceans’ status. The underwater drones serve as digital diving masks.

Mimicking the hydrodynamics of fish, the drones are far steadier and therefore, far more accurate when put underwater. What’s best, the drones can be controlled via tablets or smartphones, and all data acquired can be reshared alongside relevant imagery and video materials.
By 2025, the company is aiming to take an even bigger portion of the market, anticipated at a worth o a whopping $1.48 billion.

A Blue View

Many things distinguished Christen Spiten and her co-founders from other developers. For one, Christine focused on helping the environment rather than using it for an advantage. Also, Christine’s admiration for the ocean and sea world initiated the rise of new underwater technology to help uncover the connections between water pollution and climate change.

Essentially, BlueEye Robotics was created to give explorers a glance inside the blue marble and study underwater life in the deepest depths. BlueEye Robotics is committed to developing more underwater technology to help scientists unravel the deep ocean mysteries whilst also eradicating pollution. The BlueEye Robotics underwater drone led Christine Spiten to collaborate with the World Wildlife Fund in reducing ocean plastic.

The girl who once collected plastic trash instead of seashells, now promises that, thanks to BlueEye Robotics, beaches, open waters, and seaside coasts will be far less polluted, far less neglected - and far more monitored and protected!