Vitus Bering icebreaker

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SCF Sovcomflot Russia (Icebreakers)

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Vitus Bering icebreaker Review and Specifications

Specifications of Vitus Bering icebreaker

Year built 2012  /  Age : 5
Flag state Russia
Builder Arctech Helsinki Shipyard (Helsinki, Finland)
Class Russian diesel icebreaker (supply vessel)
Building cost USD 100 million
Owner SCF Sovcomflot (Russia)
Operator SCF Sovcomflot (Russia)
Speed 15 kn / 28 kph / 17 mph
Length (LOA) 100 m / 328 ft
Beam (width) 22 m / 72 ft
Gross Tonnage 7487 gt
Passengers 28
Crew 22
Cabins 25
Sister-ships Aleksey Chirikov

Review of Vitus Bering icebreaker

MS Vitus Bering ("ледокол Витус Беринг") is an icebreaking vessel owned and operated by SCF Sovcomflot ("Совкомфлот"). The shipowner is Russian state-owned corporation that specializes in petroleum and LNG shipping.

The icebreaker is operated as supply vessel for the Russia's Arkutun-Dagi Oil and Gas Field (Sakhalin 1 oil field) in Sea of Okhotsk, northwestern Pacific Ocean. The ship is named after Vitus Bering (aka Ivan Ivanovich Bering, 1681-1741), who was Danish in origin and Russian Navy officer and cartographer. Bering, together with Aleksei Ilyich Chirikov (1703-1748) were the first Russians to reach North America during the Great Northern Expedition (aka Second Kamchatka expedition, 1733-1743). During the expedition were mapped most of Siberia's Arctic coast and parts of North America's coastline and islands.

History and construction

This Russian icebreaker class was designed by Arctech Helsinki Shipyard (Helsinki Finland) as supply vessel, with sister ship Aleksey Chirikov (launched 2013). Both ships were ordered on December 16, 2010, following the December 10-signed agreement between the shipbuilders STX Finland (currently Meyer Turku) and OCK ("United Shipbuilding Corporation", Russia) to form the joint venture company "Arctech Helsinki Shipyard".

Vitus Bering icebreaker ship

Sovcomflot's shipbuilding contract value for both icebreakers was USD 200 million. Initially, the ships were sceduled for delivery both in April 2013.

Most hull blocks were assembled at the Arctech shipyard, and the majority of them were manufactured in Russia (by Vyborg Shipyard). Only 5 of all the 42 hull blocks for both ships were manufactured in Finland. From Vyborg, the Russia-made hull blocks via a cargo barge were delivered to the Arctech shipyard for outfitting, painting and assembly.

The Vitus Bering ship's steel-cutting ceremony was on July 6, 2011, held at the Vyborg shipyard, with which officially started the vessel's construction. The assembly in August 2011 in Helsinki. The ship's keel-laying ceremony was on January 19, 2012, in Helsinki. During the ceremony, the first block (353-ton midship section) was lowered to the covered drydock.

The icebreaker Vitus Bering was floated out on June 30, 2012. Aleksey Chirikov ship's hull assembly started in July 2012, and was floated out on November 23, 2012. The ship was delivered on December 21, 2012 (4 months ahead of schedule). From Helsinki, the icebreaker left for St Petersburg Russia, where on January 10, 2013, it was boarded by Russian Federation's President Vladimir Putin.

Vitus Bering icebreaker vessel details

Aleksey Chirikov and Vitus Bering icebreakers ship design (Aker Arctic)

  • The vessel is powered by all four Wartsila marine diesel engines (generator sets), of which two are 12-cylinder (model 12V32, combined power 12 MW) and two are 6-cylinder (model 6L32, combined power 6 MW). The ship's power plant generates combined power output 18 MW (24,000 hp). This provides electricity for all onboard systems
  • The ship's propulsion is diesel-electric, consisting of two ABB Azipods (azymuth thrusters, model VI1600, combined power output 13 MW) plus 2 bow thrusters (combined power 2,6 MW).
  • Draught: 8 m (26 ft) when fully loaded
  • Deadweight: 4158
  • Ice-breaking capacity: 1,7 m (6 ft) - both ahead and astern ice-break capability
  • Ice-breaking speed: 3 kn (5,6 kph / 3,5 mph) in ice thickness 1,5 m (5 ft)
  • Endurance: 30 days
  • Ice class: Icebreaker6 ( RMRS / "Russian Maritime Register of Shipping")
  • Cargo capacity: cargo deck (709 m2), liquids-bulk (3850 m3)
  • Crew and passenger capacity: 50 (22+28)
  • Fire fighting capacity: 2 monitors (each 1200 m3 per hour), water spraying capacity 1000 m3 per hour
  • Rescue capacity: 195 people
  • Similarly designed, but with increased power (6 engines / 21 MW), larger capacity (70 people) and a moon pool (for diving support) is the SCF's icebreaking supply vessel Gennadiy Nevelskoy (launched 2017).

Aleksey Chirikov and Vitus Bering icebreakers ship design (Aker Arctic)

Note: In case of poor AIS coverage, tracking the vessel's current location will be impossible. You can see the CruiseMapper's list of all icebreakers and ice-breaking research ships in the "itinerary" section of our Icebreakers hub. All states and their fleets are listed there.

Photos of Vitus Bering icebreaker

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