Polarcus deployed two ICE-1A class vessels, and one ICE-1A* class vessel to complete two 3D surveys offshore Greenland in the world’s largest Arctic seismic exploration program to date, in Baffin Bay, about 600 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle off the coast of western Greenland.
In addition to the three seismic vessels, there were nine support vessels, operating in smaller groups with the seismic vessels during the operation. All 12 vessels were equipped with Sea-Hawk X9 Radars in order to detect ice as early as possible, enhancing safety for ships and their crews, and to keep the operating time as high as possible.
The three Polarcus vessels had their Sea-Hawk Radars already installed before start of the Greenland operation. The nine Support vessels were installed with
Sea-Hawk Radars during June and July in Canada, Holland, Scotland, and Greenland. All installations carried out by Sea-Hawk Engineers. These 12 vessels and their crew were put to test the summer of 2012 during a 12-week 3D seismic survey, commencing operations in late July and completing the work two and a half months later, in mid-October. The cold hard truth about working in the Arctic; freezing equipment is a constant challenge; ice can force vessels to veer off track; and drifting ice can damage both the vessel and the equipment.
The Ice Management Plan involved the integration of data from numerous remote information sources. On each vessel, enhanced ice detection radar systems delivered by Sea-Hawk were used. The Radars was operated by two ice “navigators” on each of the vessels. It’s partially thanks to the sophisticated
Sea-Hawk Radars that the project recorded a very low technical downtime –
less than 3%.
The success of the 2012 Greenland program has proved that there are no barriers of entry to this region. Despite the complexity and challenges of conducting safe and successful marine 3D seismic operations in ice-prone Arctic waters, zero recordable incidents were experienced, with no significant harm to personnel, marine life, vessels or equipment.
Sea-Hawk is proud to be part of Polarcus Arctic operations.