Single Vessel Configurations

The most common approach to marine seismic acquisition is to use a single vessel towing a wide spread of many streamers and three or more source arrays. 

The streamer and source configuration will determine data quality, illumination, and acquisition efficiency. The geophysical, geological  and environmental objectives, balanced by budgetary constraints, will determine the number of streamers, their length and separation, as well as the number and positioning of sources.

Narrow azimuth and multi azimuth (MAZ) surveys are commonly acquired with a single vessel. The GeoStreamer X approach involves constructing a MAZ survey by adding new azimuths on top of existing datasets.

Triple Source

The use of three sources (triple source) is standard. This optimizes spatial crossline sampling for high-resolution imaging, or greater streamer separation and thus greater acquisition efficiency, and reduced environmental impact.

Adjust the parameters with our Acquisition Calculator to find the optimal configuration to solve your imaging challenge. Calculate illumination with various streamer and source configurations. Tailor the acquisition geometry and figure out the compromises for efficiency versus sampling.


In conventional, narrow-azimuth 3D marine surveys, a single vessel tows a streamer spread and the subsurface geology is illuminated from the acquisition direction. In the multi-azimuth (MAZ) method, a single vessel acquires data over a survey area in two or more directions. 

In areas with complex geology, adding more azimuths can positively affect the subsurface image. The benefits of additional azimuths extend beyond illumination, they also produce better signal-to-noise ratio and improved spatial sampling.

A standard MAZ survey comprises two or three survey azimuths. This may involve acquiring new data to complement a legacy survey. 

MAZ surveying involves a single vessel acquiring 3D seismic data over the same survey area with two or more survey azimuthsWhere the subsurface above the target area is complex, data quality and resolution may be improved by illuminating the area of interest from several different orientations. This can be achieved by repeating the acquisition from several sail-line directions using a technique called multi-azimuth acquisition (MAZ).