Russia to build world's largest nuclear-powered icebreaker

Russia to build world's largest nuclear-powered icebreaker
Fri Apr 25, 2014 20:10:05

Russia has started construction of the world's largest nuclear-powered icebreaker in an effort to meet the country's strategic and shipping demands in the Arctic area.

Work on the ship, Arktika, has been going on in St. Petersburg's Baltic Shipyard, founded in 1856 as one of the country's top shipyards.

The Arktika is named after the prominent Soviet icebreaker that was in service from 1975 to 2008.

The new Arktika icebreaker will be 173.3 meters long and 34 meters wide, with a displacement of 33,540 tons, and equipped with two 175 megawatt nuclear reactors.

It will be able to break through four-meter thick ice at a speed of 1.5 to 2 knots, guaranteeing smooth water traffic in the Arctic sea throughout the year.

"This will be an incomparable icebreaker, four meters wider than the previous largest nuclear-powered icebreaker. This will guarantee smooth passage in the north for all types of vessels. Under Arktika's guidance, vessels of various classes can navigate the Arctic sea from north of Russia through to the Far East," said Sergey Ivanov, deputy chief engineer of the Arktika.

"Vessels of all classes can sail through, as the Arktika can break ice three to four meters thick," he added.

According to Russian finance ministry, the Arktika will cost about 38.9 billion Russian rubles (1.1 Billion USD) and will be launched in 2017.