Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker

Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker current position

Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker current location is at East Asia (coordinates 42.90198 N / 131.42429 E) cruising en route to RUVVO-RUSKA. The AIS position was reported 5 minutes ago.

Current Position

Specifications of Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker

Year of build1981  /  Age: 42
Flag state Russia
BuilderWartsila Hietalahti shipyard (Helsinki, Finland)
ClassRussian diesel icebreaker (cruise ship)
Ferry route / homeportsVladivostok
Engines (power)Wartsila-Sulzer (63 MW / 84484 hp)
Speed18 kn / 33 km/h / 21 mph
Length (LOA)129 m / 423 ft
Beam (width)27 m / 89 ft
Gross Tonnage12288 gt
Decks with cabins4
Last Refurbishment2018
OwnerRussian Federation (via FSUE Atomflot)
OperatorRosatom (Rosmorport), Quark Expeditions

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The 1981-built MS Kapitan Khlebnikov ("ледокол Капитан Хлебников") is an icebreaking vessel. The "icebreaker cruise ship" is regularly chartered by the travel company Quark Expeditions for tourist shipping operations on itineraries to Russian Arctic territories.

The vessel (IMO number 7824417, Helsinki Shipyard/hull number 430) is currently Russia-flagged (MMSI 273146110) and homeported in Vladivostok.

Until 2016, the boat was owned by the Russian company FESCO Group (subsidiary "Far East Shipping Company"). Since 2016, it is owned by the Russian Federation and managed by the state-owned corporation Rosmorport. This icebreaking vessel is generally used for supplying mines, resource exploitation industries and for scientific expeditions.

Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker cruise ship

The former shipowner FESCO is Russia's largest intermodal transportation company. Among the services provided are marine shipping, cargo port handling and rail transportation. The company has over 70 sales offices around the world, with its headquarters in Moscow. FESCO is publicly traded and among Russia's largest privately-owned logistics and transportation companies. Its businesses also include cargo ports management, marine shipping, ferry services, rail services, logistics. Most of its operations are in Russia's Far East regions. FESCO's fleet, along with Khlebnikov, also includes the diesel-powered icebreakers Admiral Makarov, Krasin and Magadan.

The icebreaker was constructed in Finland in 1981 as one of four Kapitan Sorokin-class icebreaking vessels. In 1990, the vessel was converted into a cruise ship. Khlebnikov has 51 cruise cabins, Bar Lounge/Messhall, a theatre-style Auditorium, modern amenities (complimentary drinks, sauna, heated indoor plunge pool). This is also the only cruise ship with two onboard helicopters, providing opportunities for aerial sightseeing excursions.

Kapitan Khlebnikov cruise itinerary program offers polar expedition cruises in the Arctic, leaving from Anchorage (Alaska, USA), Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen, Svalbard Norway) and Ottawa (Ontario, Canada).

In March 2012 the vessel retired as a passenger ship and returned to escort duties in the Russian Arctic. Quark Expeditions then marked the occasion with special guests and itineraries. From July 10, 2011, through September 13, 2011, the icebreaker made a full Arctic circumnavigation cruise which lasted for 66 days and featured adventure activities and helicopter tours.

Besides Quark Expeditions, the icebreaker is also chartered by the USA-based company "Victory Cruises". The company generally charters Russian icebreakers and ice-strengthened cruise ships, among which are Akademic Sergey Vavilov, Akademik Ioffe, Ushuaia, Ortelius, Plancius, Ocean Nova, Polar Pioneer, Stella Australis.

Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker vessel details

FESCO is the biggest icebreaker-ship operator in Far East Russia. The Russian Federation government transferred 4 ice-breaking vessels to the company. FESCO's fleet, along with Khlebnikov, also includes the diesel-powered icebreakers Makarov, Krasin and Magadan.

The four ships provide assistance in the ice-covered waters of the Russian far-eastern seas and the Arctic. However, their deployment is not limited to these sectors and covers areas from the Eastern Arctic region down to the Antarctica coast.

Kapitan Khlebnikov icebreaker ship

A polar-class icebreaker that combines technology with modern comforts, the Kapitan Khlebnikov ship was originally designed for the severity of the Arctic Ocean. She has twin decks, with superstructure and engine room located midship, transom stern and an icebreaker bow. The stern area is cushioned to allow for close towing of other ships when helping through the ice.

Passenger accommodations include a total of 54 cabins and suites. The icebreaker has two dining rooms, a Bar Lounge. Other amenities are an exercise room, sauna and heated indoor swimming pool, as well as Boutique Shop and theatre-style Auditorium. The Library offers an extensive polar-themed books collection.

The ice-breaker's double hull has water ballast between, along with pumps that move ballast water at up to 74 tons/min to help ice breaking. Hull thickness at ice skirt is 45 mm (elsewhere is 25-35 mm). Friction between the vessel and ice is reduced via polymer-paint coating (at ice skirt level). An air-bubbling system also aids ice breaking and lowers friction. Air is forced under pressure from 2 m (6,6 ft) above keel - from the bow to halfway down.

Besides Khlebnikov, the list of other Russian icebreaker cruise ships also includes Akademik Ioffe, Akademik Sergey Vavilov, Kapitan Dranitsyn, and the nuclear ships 50 Let Pobedy and Yamal,

  • The vessel has 1 dining room, Sauna, 1 swimming pool (indoor, heated), 1 elevator, 1 helipad (helicopter deck).
  • Max Draught: 8,5 m (28 ft)
  • Displacement tonnage: 14917 tons
  • DWT Deadweight tonnage: 4515 tons
  • Power: Wartsila-Sulzer (six diesel engines type 9ZL40/48), each with 3040 kW output (combined 18,24 MW)
  • Propulsion: diesel-electric, with three shafts (each with 5,4 MW output, or combined 16,2 MW)

Note: In the case of poor AIS coverage, tracking the vessel's current location will be impossible. You can see 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.

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In February 2006, the icebreaker reached Antarctica's Bay of Whales (ice harbour in Ross Ice Shelf, north of Roosevelt Island), equalling the record set in 1911 by the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen (reaching 78-degrees South). In 1996, Khlebnikov became the world's first ship to circumnavigate Antarctica with cruise passengers and remains the world's only passenger ship to have circumnavigated Antarctica twice.

Kapitan Khlebnikov is an icebreaker cruise ship designed for polar expeditions in icy seas. No passenger's vessel has transited Northwest Passage more often than Khlebnikov. This ship has the highest-class ice-strengthened hull, advanced navigation equipment and Zodiac boats for remote landings and coastal wildlife exploration. The vessel is well focused on wellness and health, with its sauna, gym, indoor swimming pool.

Besides Khlebnikov, Quark Expeditions fleet also includes 50 Let Pobedy (nuclear icebreaker), Ocean Endeavour, Ocean Diamond, Ocean Nova, Ocean Adventurer.

The vessel's ownership changed in 2016, when it was transferred to FSUE Rosmorport (Russia's Federal Agency for Marine and River Transport).

  • In 2018 (September thru December) it was chartered by Quark Expeditions for a series of Antarctic cruises leaving roundtrip from homeport Ushuaia Argentina and visiting Snow Hill Island.
  • In 2019 (July thru September) it was chartered by Heritage Expeditions for a series of Russian Arctic cruises leaving roundtrip from homeport Anadyr and visiting Wrangel Island.

In late-November 2018, the New Zealand-based travel company Heritage Expeditions announced that in 2019-2020 it will charter Kapitan Khlebnikov for voyages to Wrangel Island.

In December 2018 was announced that Wild Earth Travel (Christchurch New Zealand-based company) will charter the icebreaker for 3 cruises to the Russian Arctic in 2019 (departures July 8, July 22, August 5). The 14-day itinerary offered optional 1-night pre- and/or post-cruise hotel in Nome Alaska. Prices started from USD 13,625 per person.

On October 6, 2021, the icebreaker left Port Vladivostok bounded for Antarctica, to deliver personnel and cargo to Russia's Vostok Station (1957-opened, Princess Elizabeth Land).

  • The ship carried construction materials and equipment (for the Vostok Station's new complex), as well as 114 passengers/personnel and 52 crew, and was scheduled to arrive back in Vladivostok in December.
  • The Station's new complex (assembled from prefabricated modules) features an aerodynamic shape, anti-freezing systems, an in-wall insulation system, special windows (equipped with pressure compensators). The Station operates autonomously ~10 months per year. Here was recorded the planet's ever-lowest air temperature (-89,2 С / -128,56 F).