The keel-laying ceremony for the first Arc130A Icebreaker8 ice-class vessel, built to order for Gazprom Neft, has taken place at the Vyborg Shipyard, on 3 November 2015. The vessel has been named the Alexander Sannikov.
Two ice-breaking vessels are to be built at the Vyborg Shipyard, to operate in the Gulf of Ob (Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Region) at the Vorota Arktiki (the Arctic Gate) crude-loading terminal of the Novoportovskoye field. The vessels are designed to support crude handling, to provide ice-breaking support for tankers, and to support rescue operations, vessel towing, firefighting, and participation in oil-spill response operations. Both vessels have been designed on the principle of zero-emissions, with all solid and liquid wastes retained on board for recycling offshore. The icebreakers will be able to sustain uninterrupted operation at temperatures as low as −50ºC. Under the terms of the contract, the vessels will be delivered to Gazprom Neft before 2018. Both vessels will be registered under the Russian flag.
The icebreaker, as envisaged, with three steerable propellers (two located in the stern of the vessel and one in the bow) delivers maximum efficiency in operations under the severe climatic conditions in which the vessel will have to operate. The 21.5 MW-capacity vessel is able to operate in ice of up to two metres thick.
Gazprom Neft CEO Alexander Dyukov commented: “We will start commercial production at the Novoportovskoye field in the first quarter of 2016. Establishing a major oil-production cluster on the Yamal Peninsula demands infrastructure development, of which the icebreakers currently under construction will form a part. Ensuring year-round accessibility will, in turn, be a further driver in developing the region.”
The new-generation Arc130A icebreakers will be 121.7 metres in length, have a beam of 26 metres and a design draft of eight metres. The vessels will have a diesel-electric propulsion system, powered by azimuth thrusters (two 7,500 KW thrusters at the back and one 6,500 KW thruster at the front). The ship has been named the Alexander Sannikov in memory of the former head of Gazprom Neft’s Oil Refining Directorare who died in 2015.
Gazprom Neft operates throughout the most significant oil- and gas-producing regions of the Russian Federation, including the Khanty-Mansi and Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrugs, and the Tomsk, Omsk, Orenburg Oblasts. The corporate structure of Gazprom Neft includes more than 70 upstream, refining, and retailing enterprises throughout Russia, the CIS and abroad.
The Vyborg Shipyard PJSC is one of the largest shipbuilding companies of the North-Western Region of Russia. More than 210 different vessels have been built since the shipyard’s establishment in 1948 (amounting to a total tonnage (deadweight) of over 1,550,000 tonnes), as well as nine offshore drilling platforms and 105 topside facility units for oil and gas development.
The United Shipbuilding Corporation is one Russia’s most significant shipbuilding companies. Established under Decree by the President of the Russian Federation in 2007, the company is
* The propulsion system is that part of a vessel’s power system driving the azimuth thrusters for propulsion. It typically includes the generators, motors, and transmission system, etc.