Neurotec is the technological revolution that has come to greatly improve the performance of vibroseis, offering a safer and more uniform working environment that allows access to the most critical functions of vibroseis, delivering a more efficient monitoring of the units. Neurotec also enables the automation of various functions that improve cost control and crew planning.
INOVA is reimagining the design, manufacture and operation of vibroseis with a focus on improving the fundamentals with modern technologies. NEUROtec is the latest initiative in vibroseis technology by INOVA Geophysical to enable a new generation of vibroseis that is safer to use, more environmentally friendly, more productive and have exceptional broadband geophysical performance. NEUROtec represents the driving force behind the evolution of vibroseis.
Today’s vibroseis is a large precision instrument that requires detailed setup, constant monitoring and careful operation to perform as intended. The technology has proven to be very effective at fulfilling its primary function, that is, to supply carefully controlled, highly repeatable seismic source signals for subsurface imaging. While improvements in vibroseis have been made over time, there is a need for further advancement due to new requirements and regulations in different industries and environments.
For INOVA, improvements come from decades of experience. NEUROtec originates on the technical advancements achieved with the AHV-IV 364 Commander vibrator that was introduced in the early 2000’s, ushering in enhanced low frequency performance and higher fidelity signal generation. This was followed by the introduction of UniVib and UV2, broadband vibroseis with ultra-low emissions and a compact, environmentally-friendly design. Most recently, the AHV-V 480 Titan has revolutionized low-frequency performance in large vibroseis along with a host of other technical enhancements. Each one of these popular vibrator vehicles contribute key elements to NEUROtec, the next technology to provide further benefits in several key areas.
QHSE encapsulates a broad spectrum of opportunities to enhance the modern vibroseis. More importantly, a safer, uniform work environment. Digital control and monitoring systems are enabling technologies that allow scrutiny of nearly any function of the vibroseis that is critical to safety and operations. These include systems such as cameras and sensors that cover blind spots and help prevent serious accidents in the field with obstacle detection and warning. These monitoring systems also provide a window into critical functions of the vibroseis - monitoring engine dynamics, fluids, pressures and many others. In addition, a digital vibroseis infrastructure can be used to ensure the driver is wearing a seatbelt or induce other user-required prerequisites before driving or operating the vibroseis. The goal is to enable a work environment where management can define operational procedures and assure compliance and safety.
The benefits of a digital vibroseis system are not limited to real-time monitoring. Vibroseis parameter storage is another function. Any system that is monitored can have its history recorded and saved for further analysis. Historical data can be used to examine performance of fleets and identify vibroseis units that are in need of maintenance or repair before issues become critical.
NEUROtec also reaches other areas of the vibroseis, such as implementation of new engine technologies that require less fuel, generate more horsepower and reduce ambient noise generation. They also come with specific enhancements such as low sulfur fuel requirements and emission standards that meet current and future regulations forming a solid investment in technology capable of meeting regulatory requirements now and in the future.
Keeping a vibroseis fleet working in the field environment is the challenge of every seismic crew operator. Projects often require 24-hour operations where vibroseis and their maintenance crews are continually on the go. NEUROtec includes automation of certain functions of the vibroseis to enhance productivity and streamline intense source operation.
Automation of functions such as the sweep operation can help speed shooting rates when shooting time impacts the critical cost on large seismic projects. Operator assisted accelerating or braking between source points are additional functions that are part of NEUROtec. When linked with existing navigation features, these functions provide better insight and control on project planning. These features benefit crews by improving driver consistency of all experience levels, making crew operations more predictable and reliable, thereby enhancing cost control and crew planning. Saving a few seconds on each shot point may seem like a minor issue; but when generalized over the course of a project, it becomes an important financial step. Projects with hundreds of thousands of source points that could take many months to shoot can realize substantial reductions in field time and ultimately, savings to the overall cost of the project that can be very significant.
Additionally, overseeing of the vibroseis mechanical dynamics with monitoring technology benefits the crew operations by providing insight into vehicle maintenance and repair. Maintenance operations become more proactive and have the potential to identify general vehicle issues before they become critical and force down time. Preventive maintenance enabled by clear and accurate activity logs becomes a reality through NEUROtec.
INOVA has historically committed a great deal of research and development into enhancing the geophysical performance of vibroseis products. The Commander, UV2 and recent Titan all demonstrate this commitment to building a better vibroseis product. The performance enhancements realized in the current vibroseis products are all part of NEUROtec . The Titan vibroseis benefits from a longer mass-stroke that increases force output at lower frequencies, and an improved baseplate assembly that results in high fidelity signal coupling. UV2 is a small sized vibroseis that can function in a wide variety of environments including urban settings and still be capable of sweeping to very high frequencies over 200Hz.
Through testing, analysis, and engineering innovations, the current INOVA vibroseis benefit from enhancements such as Harmonic Distortion Reduction, known as HDR, that results in greater force output while reducing the harmonics of the system. HDR is part of the NEUROtec suite of improvements that have been field proven in every operational environment. Newer algorithms have been developed. These real-time functions are showing promise in adapting the vibroseis to dramatic surface condition changes in shooting environments that are extremely challenging. The potential for future enhancements are envisioned.
Continued development of NEUROtec technologies is well underway and point to a new generation of vibroseis that provides significant value and benefits to contractors, operators, and their ultimate customers - the explorationist. NEUROtec’s objectives aim to provide a safer and cleaner operating vibroseis coupled with lower cost and better controlled operations. With enhancements to the geophysical performance, the evolution of vibroseis technology is directed towards a product that will be superior in every aspect and will be designed to adapt to the requirements of a shifting work environment.
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