Captain Scott Laughlin and Captain Paul Clarke will lead the alternating crews operating Australia’s new icebreaker, the RSV Nuyina. Both Captains come to the role with experienced track records working in the Southern Ocean. Paul Clarke also has extensive experience in the Antarctic, while Paul Clarke started working for the British Antarctic Survey as a deck hand in 1994.
The Canadian Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, Jonathan Wilkinson, announced that the Coast Guard will be provided with six new program icebreakers to replace its current, old fleet of icebreakers.
Russia deployed a nuclear-powered icebreaker on May 25, under its program to expand its fleet of the ships. This move aims to improve its ability to leverage the Arctic’s commercial possibilities. Now, the ship ‘Ural’ is one of three vessels that when completed will be the largest and most powerful icebreakers globally.
The US Coast Guard’s next icebreaker is based on a German research vessel, and is also equipped with a Finnish propulsion design. The vessel will be driven by American diesels, according to shipbuilder VT Halter Marine. The US Department of the Navy had appointed VT Halter Marine to be the prime contractor of a $745,940,860 contract for the construction of USCG’s Heavy Polar Icebreaker.
Through an Integrated Program Office, the US Coast Guard and US Navy awarded VT Halter Marine Inc., of Pascagoula, Mississippi, a fixed price incentive contract for the Detail Design and Construction of the USCG’s lead Polar Security Cutter.
Nuyina, the Antarctic Supply Research Vessel which is being built for the Australian government’s Antarctic Division has gotten unique rudders and steering gear. The project is lead by Damen Marine Component (DMC), who completed the supply and installation of a number of critical systems.
The Arctic is considered as one of the most challenging shipping routes. Being open only a few months, few ships have chosen this route for their voyages, worrying about the extreme weather. However, this seems to be changing, as lately more and more ships actually prefer the Northern Sea Route. Today, there is more traffic in this route, as journey times between Asia and Europe can be reduced by up to two weeks.
The Canadian tug Lois M arrived at the disabled chemical/oil products tanker Jana Desgagnes (IMO 9046564) off Cape Ray during the afternoon of March 24th. The tanker was disabled as it got stuck in heavy ice in the Cabot Strait.
When sailing in the Gulf of Bothnia, which is full of ice, many additional concerns compared to sailing in a plain liquid sea will occur. The thickness of the ice affects the speed and the fuel consumption of the vessel, while there is always the risk of getting stuck. Sea Traffic Management, through the Winter Navigation Service, aims to give a solution to this problems and help ships navigate safely.
The crew of US’s only heavy icebreaker, Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star, returned to Seattle on Monday, March 11, after supporting Operation Deep Freeze in Antarctica, the US military operation to resupply the US Antarctic Program. The crewmembers of the Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star experienced flooding, an electrical outage, electrical switchboard issues and an incinerator fire, before accomplishing their mission.
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