The 'azimuth explosion' continues in marine seismic ///

The seismic industry is seeing the emergence of novel acquisition methods that use varying azimuths and offsets. These techniques are gaining mainstream acceptance as they prove their usefulness. These survey types improve illumination and can often improve signal-to-noise ratios by providing attenuation of some multiples. The main driver is the need to better image targets that are beneath complex overburden, especially subsalt targets. Also, it is still unpredictable whether/when a given target will be imaged differently depending on shooting direction. In general, the more shooting directions and the greater the data density, the clearer the image, provided you can afford it. But the law of diminishing returns applies. The considerable added cost-two to four times as much as a conventional survey-will hold these techniques to a small portion of the seismic market. However, given the increasing depth of targets, the motive and money are there for market growth.

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