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Monday, August 10, 2015

Two brand new 'Armed' ice breaking rescue and salvage vessels for Russia are ready at Nordic Yards in Germany.

Two brand new 'Armed' ice breaking rescue and salvage vessels for Russia are ready at Nordic Yards in Germany. (BarendObserver).

The two identical vessels are icebreakers of the second highest ice class, suitable for rescue operations in harsh environments. They can be used both for icebreaking operations in harbors and waters with an ice thickness of 1m as well as for fire-fighting and combating oil spills from the sea.

“Beringov Proliv” will be based in the Sakhalin region, while “Murman” will be based in Murmansk, the shipyard says in a press release.

The vessels can study the ocean floor and damaged objects at depths of up to 1,000m. Furthermore, they are equipped with a helipad on the bow.

The Russian Federal Marine and River Transport Agency and German shipbuilder Nordic Yards in December 2012 signed a contract for the construction of two icebreaking rescue and salvage vessels to operate in Russian Arctic waters. The total volume of the orders was €150 million. Hmmm.....Russia has already a large fleet of Ice breakers, now they're getting armed ones. I Hope that Canada takes notes.

HT And Source:

US Coast Guard still wrangling with Only one 'retired' heavy ice breaker.

Russian nuclear build heavy ice breaker Yamal.

US Coast Guard still wrangling with Only one 'retired' heavy ice breaker. (Janes).

As human activity in the Arctic continues to expand, the chief of the US Coast Guard (USCG) remains concerned about the nation's limited ice-breaking capability and is continuing to advocate for recapitalising its obsolete fleet of heavy ice breakers.

"This is not a coastguard unique challenge. It's a global access challenge that requires a national solution," Admiral Paul Zukunft, commandant of the USCG, said on 24 February in his annual state of the coastguard address.

Polar-class USCGC Polar Star (WAGB 10), a 39-year-old cutter that has been reactivated, remains the United States' sole heavy ice breaker, with sister ship USCGC Polar Sea (WAGB 11) laid up in disrepair. The 16,000-tonne medium ice breaker USCGC Healy (WAGB 20) is also in service.

Demand for ice-breaking capability is only growing, as several recent cases have demonstrated, the commandant noted. Polar Star in mid-February steamed 900 miles and broke through 150 miles of ice to rescue a 207-ft fishing vessel, Antarctic Chieftan , hailing from New Zealand with 26 crew members, that had become stranded in the southern polar region. "Ponder that for a minute, what a truly spectacular rescue and what would happen if we weren't there," Adm Zukunft said. "What concerns me even more is that the United States has no rescue capability whatsoever had it been Polar Star who suffered a catastrophic [mechanical] casualty and become beset in ice."

A study commissioned by the USCG to assess the United States' future ice breaker requirement concluded that a fleet of three heavy and three medium ice breakers would fulfill the needs for operating in the polar regions.

Enticing shipbuilders to help on a new ice breaker also has been difficult. "When you try to incentivise a shipyard to building an ice breaker, most shipyards will not make the front-end capital investments to build one ship of one type. So there's been an expressed need for more than one ice breaker," Adm Zukunft told reporters.

USCG officials have been arguing for a 'whole-of-government' approach to funding a new ice breaker for some time, but the idea has yet to gain traction with US agencies with a vested interest, such as the Department of Defense, which also is struggling with its own budgetary problems.

To keep up with the burgeoning activity in the Arctic, the USCG is weighing options for bolstering its ice-breaking capability in the near term, including leasing ice breakers, reactivating Polar Sea , and possibly pursuing new ship acquisitionHmmmm......Meanwhile the Russians have 6 heavy nuclear powered icebreakers, 7th is being build, and the have 39 diesel powered ice breakers. Good luck defending the arctic from Russia's appetite.China has 2 heavy ice breakers and one more coming in to service next year.Read the full story here.

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