On Thursday, August 23, Russia's Nuclear Power Corporation Rosatom signed a contract for the construction of the main universal icebreaker of new generation.
The icebreaker will be of dual draft: it will operate on both the rivers of the Arctic region, and on the Northern Sea Route, reports KM.ru. It will also be able to replace "Arktika" and "Taimyr" nuclear icebreakers. The width of those vessels is 30 meters, whereas the width of the new ship will be 34 meters. Thus, the new ship will be able to bring the tankers with the displacement of not more than 70,000 tons.
In the future, the Baltic Factory shipyard plans to build two more nuclear-powered icebreakers, says Lenta.ru. If the program is implemented, the ships will be launched in 2019 and 2020.
The new icebreaker will require adequate servicing and equipment. "As long as the icebreaker is larger and heavier, it will not fit anywhere. The company will need a new floating dock of a large size and capacity. To service the reactor, one will need to have the new cargo handling equipment," Vyacheslav Ruksha, the head of Atomflot said.
"Without the new cargo handling equipment, I will not be able to load the fuel into the reactor systems of the new icebreaker. This means that by the time the construction of the new icebreaker is completed, the cargo handling equipment must be ready too. As soon as we accept the icebreaker for operation, the need for docking the ship may arise at any moment. Our company must have the appropriate docking station," the official added.