New technology developed by MacArtney & ION, in the form of a SailWing actuator and control system designed to ensure the correct positioning and stability of seismic survey source arrays, has been launched to gather data for enhanced exploration and production of oil and gas.

2 SailWing Actuator mechanismSailWing Actuator mechanism

With a strong history of innovation, ION Geophysical has been a technology leader for 50 years. Their reputation within the Exploration & Production industry for innovative technology marries well with MacArtney’s 40-year reputation for providing optimal solutions to the highest standards of quality and service.

Earlier this year MacArtney provided six customized SailWing actuators for use in a control system for ION Geophysical. On the cutting edge of technology, the SailWing actuator and its control panel are designed to control sources towed from a seismic vessel gathering data intended for 3D interpretation of the subsurface, in search of oil and gas.

3 SailWing Actuators ready for installation into head floatsSailWing Actuators ready for installation into head floats

Traditionally, source arrays are stabilized by a complicated connection of ropes and deflectors. The SailWing actuator is installed in each source head float and controls the SailWing angle of attack, which stabilises the array with software controlled adjustable lift.

3D surveys repeated over time (4D) provide critical information to allow the optimization of fields over their lifetime. Improved source stability means the signature from the source is more repeatable, survey after survey, which in turn delivers better 4D information.

4 SailWing Actuator Topside Control PanelSailWing Actuator Topside Control Panel

Additionally, the SailWing ensures costly downtime is avoided during source maintenance and repair since neighbouring sources can be navigated to a safe distance for trouble-free maintenance and quick redeployment.

Control of SailWing happens via ION’s state of the art Orca or Gator navigation system interfacing with the electronic control rack that then communicates with the actuator, signalling the mechanism to adjust the lift provided by the SailWing.

MacArtney has designed and manufactured the SailWing actuators, control system topside rack, power supplies and a remote-control box allowing for manual control of each SailWing actuator.

This customized solution has broader applications, enhancing the MacArtney portfolio of custom designed and manufactured products shaped to their customers’ needs.

As a full system solutions provider, MacArtney supply custom solutions to a wide range of marine industries from offshore oil and gas to the renewable energy sector, ocean science institutes, civil engineering, fishery, defence and navies around the world.

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