Russia will not remain without powerful icebreakers

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Russia will not remain without powerful icebreakers, after the year 2021 will write off all Soviet-built ships more. Resolved the last issue of funding the construction of two high-power production of nuclear icebreakers by 2020, designed to bring the Northern Sea Route to a new level.

The government will allocate budgetary appropriations for the construction of two universal serial icebreakers in the years 2014-2020, the corresponding decree was signed by the Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Construction of three new icebreakers is estimated at nearly 100 billion rubles (the first already started to build at the Baltic Shipyard in 2012). Despite the difficulties of the budget, the Finance Ministry has found means to carry out the May presidential order on the construction of these ships.

"This is a long-awaited decision, which we welcome. The allocation of money from the budget means that the financing of the construction of ships will be guaranteed, "- says the newspaper VIEW spokesman of the United Shipbuilding Corporation Alexey Kravchenko.

For Russia this is an extremely important step.  "Prior to 2020, will be written off the current nuclear icebreaker fleet, which spurred the decision to start construction at least part of icebreakers — the brain and the two series. All icebreakers are operated now elderly. The only nuclear-powered icebreaker, which was built in the post-Soviet era — is "50 Years of Victory". All the others were built during the Soviet era "- indicates Kravchenko. As planned, the beginning of 2021 there will be only one icebreaker working now — "50 Years of Victory".

"At that Russia — the only country that builds nuclear-powered icebreakers. Moreover, our country — the only one that has the length of the Arctic coast, and a shelf area. It makes extensive use of the Northern Sea Route, "- says the source of the newspaper VIEW.

"It is expected that by the early 20-ies of the Northern Sea Route will operate on a commercial basis and may be cost-effective. Russia, which is in the proportion of SMEs and is a natural curator of the project, can get big dividends. But if it will not have nuclear icebreaker fleet, all that will remain on paper, "- said Kravchenko.

However, after the allocation of budget funds doubt that icebreakers will be built, no. "The Russian industry and have the necessary resources and technological capabilities, and extensive experience in the construction of nuclear icebreakers" — indicates a leading expert of "Finam Management" Dmitry Baranov.

Late in the day started

However, the head Atomflota complains of lost time in vain. Now the Northern Sea Route are working only four nuclear-powered icebreaker "50 Years of Victory", "Vaygach", "Yamal" and "Taimyr". Fifth icebreaker "Soviet Union" is in the operational reserve. "Under the transit volumes of traffic that is at the moment, that's enough for traffic management," — said the other day CEO "Atomflot" (part of Rosatom) Vyacheslav Ruksha.

But if there is no final decision on ordering new class of nuclear-powered icebreakers LK-60, the companies that develop the shelves in the seas of the Arctic Ocean, in the years 2019-2020 will be left without adequate icebreaking support for the Northern Sea Route, recently explained the importance of the project Ruksha .

And, according to him, Russia has already lost one year — 2019-th. "The second and third icebreakers we had to introduce in the years 2019-2022. In the 2019 m is definitely not the new second icebreaker, it will not be before 2020-th, and by the time the project "Yamal LNG" and others will already be implemented, "- says Ruksha.

  • Diesel-electric icebreaker capacity of 25 MW will be built at the Baltic Shipyard (Photo:
  • Diesel-electric icebreaker capacity of 25 MW will be built at the Baltic Shipyard (Photo:

Diesel-electric icebreaker capacity of 25 MW will be built at the Baltic Shipyard (Photo:

He explains that in 2018, ending the life of nuclear icebreakers with shallow draft "Taimyr" and "Vaygach." It is assumed that in December 2017 ATOMFLOT receive the first in modern history class icebreaker LK-60 with capacity of 25 MW, which is already under construction at the Baltic Shipyard in St. Petersburg in October 2012. Its price — about 38 billion rubles, including VAT. As a result, laments Ruksha since 2018 Northern Sea Route will serve only three nuclear-powered icebreakers.

Last year of operation icebreaker "Yamal" — 2020-th. "If we do not want to fail in the years 2019-2020, we need the second and third icebreakers" — says Ruksha.

However, there is a temporary solution to the problem — it is life extension "Vaygach" up to 200 thousand hours (now extended to 150 thousand hours), which will allow it to run for about four years. "This opportunity worked out, the decision may be taken in November — December," — said General Director of Atomflota.

Where to swim

"New nuclear icebreakers will participate in the pilotage of the Northern Sea Route (NSR), and in the development of deposits of mineral resources on the continental shelf and on the mainland, not only hydrocarbons and to provide all necessary items are residents of the North, and in the fishing industry," — indicates the leading expert of "Finam Management" Dmitry Baranov.

The main burden for pilotage on the Northern Sea Route in extreme conditions are exactly the nuclear icebreakers. The volume of cargo transported by MSP gradually built up: in 2012 it was already transported more than 1.2 million tons of cargo, carried nearly five dozen ships. Volumes of the various activities in the area of SMEs will only increase, it will take more icebreakers, said Dmitry Baranov.

According Ruksha, the need to build a new class of nuclear-powered icebreakers is due not only plans to increase the traffic on the Northern Sea Route, but also changes the appearance of the traffic in principle: the need to ensure the safe transit shipping, including the eastern sector of large vessels with deadweight of more than 50-70 thousand tons.

According to the head Atomflota until the round navigation is only in the western sector of the Northern Sea Route in the Kara Sea, and in the eastern sector of the navigation is only in the summer-autumn period. "But in the future, if there will be appropriate icebreakers, year-round navigation and around the SMP," — he says.

Soaring Ruksha transit traffic in the coming years will not wait, but in the short-term liquefied natural gas and crude oil from fields in the North Sea and the Yamal Peninsula and in the long term — hydrocarbons from the shelf of the Kara Sea will increasingly be sold to the Pacific market through the NSR. "The transport component is even more effective than the supply to the European market", — said Ruksha.

While the main task Atomflot
a — icebreaking support traffic from reclaimed oil fields of the Yamal region's resources and the future of the shelf in the western sector of the NSR. "Our freight traffic will at 20-25 million tons, and this in two or three years", — said CEO Atomflota.

Rosatomflot carries unique piloting the NSR. In autumn 2011, the size Suezmax tanker "Vladimir Tikhonov" was held on the Northern Sea Route and carried more than 120 thousand tons of gas condensate in Thailand, to port Maptaphut.

In the past year, has been put another record on Northern Sea Route: after "Vladimir Tikhonov" on it followed the Japanese large-capacity cargo ship, bulk carrier Sanko Odyssey deadweight 74,800 tons. It is the largest dry cargo ship that has ever moved on the Northern Sea Route, it has transported more than 70 million iron ore concentrate of JSC "Eurochem", produced by Kovdor mine.

"SMEs actively use in their activities, companies such as MMC" Norilsk Nickel ", Rosatom, Gazprom, Lukoil and Rosneft. Without the work of the NSR can stop living in the northern regions of Krasnoyarsk region, Yakutia, Chukotka, "- said Baranov.

In particular, MMC "Norilsk Nickel" in 2006, has commissioned five ice-class container ships, which are the basis of the Navy, and since 2011 has been successfully operating ice-class tanker. "The whole fleet of" Norilsk Nickel "has the task of year-round and guaranteed delivery of goods to the Norilsk Industrial District and export of commercial products to domestic and foreign markets," — said Baranov.

Without a full-fledged nuclear-powered icebreakers can not develop oil and gas fields in the Arctic, which Gazprom began in 2011. Without them difficult to implement the project "Novatek" to build on the Yamal peninsula of Russia's largest LNG plant, which should start operating in 2018.

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