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RE: Akademik Fyodorov
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The Academician Fyodorov scientific research vessel has arrived at the Russian Antarctic outpost of Bellingshausen on a mission to set up a station for tracking the GLONASS navigation satellites, the Voice of Russia reported.
Glonass - the Global Navigation Satellite System - is the Russian equivalent of the U.S. Global Positioning System, or GPS, and is designed for both military and civilian use. Both systems allow users to determine their positions to within a few meters.

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Yamal icebreaker
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The Yamal is a nuclear powered ice breaker planned and started under construction in Soviet Era Russia. She is the youngest of five Arktika class ships built from the mid 1970's. Her keel was laid in 1986 in St. Petersburg, by the time she was launched in October 1992 communism had collapsed in Russia.
Like many other Russian icebreakers, the Yamal is now chartered out on other operations, particularly for tourists to earn much need foreign currency. The original purpose of being used to keep northern navigational routes open during the winter, is now less important.
For their size, the Arktika class ships are amongst the most powerful and sophisticated ever built.
The name "Yamal" means "End of the Earth" it is also applied to the Yamal Peninsula for the same reason.
Built entirely for service in the Arctic seas, the Yamal is unable to voyage to the Antarctic because of her cooling system. This requires that it be supplied with cold sea water to operate properly, if the ship were to voyage to Antarctica it would have to cross the equator and sail through the tropics where the water is most definitely warm. Hence the Yamal and her sister ships are confined to the Northern polar region.
The Yamal is one of the few ice breakers that have sailed to the North Pole having done so for a millennial cruise arriving in time for the 1st of January 2000 with a compliment of paying passengers.



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Rossiya icebreaker
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According to  Sergei Balyasnikov, a spokesman for the Arctic and Antarctic research institute an expedition aimed at strengthening Russia's claim to much of oil and gas wealth beneath the Arctic Ocean reached the North Pole on Wednesday, and preparations immediately began for two mini-submarines to drop a capsule containing a Russian flag to the sea floor.
The Rossiya icebreaker had ploughed a path to the pole through an unbroken sheet of multiyear ice, clearing the way for the Akademik Fedorov research ship to follow.

Source AP

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RE: Akademik Fyodorov
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A Russian naval expedition on its way to explore the ocean floor below the North Pole has come to a sudden halt.
The Akademik Fyodorov research ship suffered engine failure a day after setting off from Murmansk port and is reportedly drifting in the Barents Sea.

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Icebreakers
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The largest nuclear-powered icebreaker in the world has been put to sea and left St. Petersburg for Murmansk.
The 50 Years of Victory icebreaker, which has been under construction since 1989 and was built at the Baltiisky Zavod ship factory, was successfully tested in February of this year.

"The icebreaker was launched on the Baltic Sea and set sail for its port of assignment in Murmansk. The icebreaker will follow a Northern Sea route for the ice channeling of vessels during the 2007 spring navigation period" - Spokesperson for a St. Petersburg-based ship maker.

An upgrade of the Arktika-class icebreaker, the 159-meter long and 30-meter wide vessel, with a deadweight of 25,000 metric tons, is designed to break through ice up to 2.8 meters deep. It has a 138-man crew.
The Russian nuclear-powered icebreaker fleet, which is operated by the Murmansk Shipping Company, currently consists of five Arktika-class icebreakers (Arktika, Sibir, Rossiya, Sovetskiy Soyuz and Yamal), and two Taymyr-class river icebreakers (Taymyr and Vaygach).
According to experts, Russia will need six to 10 nuclear-powered icebreakers in the next 20 years, as demand for them grows with the development of the Arctic shelf and increased traffic along the Northern Sea route.

Source Novosti

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RE: Akademik Fyodorov
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Russian polar explorers have chosen a new ice floe for the North Pole-34 drifting station in the Arctic Ocean Friday.

"The ice floe is located at 75 degrees north latitude and 120 degrees east longitude. It is five kilometres long, five kilometres wide, and some two meters thick" - Alexander Danilov, deputy head of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute.

The station will open in two days.

The 14 researchers will continue exploring the Central Arctic region, which Russia first began to study back in 1937 at the world's first drifting station, North Pole-1.
The new station will replace North Pole-33, which was dismantled in early September. The researchers and equipment were evacuated from the station because the ice floe split into ten fragments

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RE: NP-34
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The evacuation of the Russian drifting station North Pole-33 (NP-33) has been completed

"On September 6 at 11.30 p.m. Moscow time (7.30 p.m. GMT) the drifting station NP-33 was removed from an ice-floe. All equipment and materials according to regulations of environment protection were loaded on board the Akademik Fyodorov ship. The vessel, led by the icebreaker Arktika, set off the region where a new station, the NP-34, will be established" - Sergei Balyasnikov, spokesman for the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute.

It will take the Akademik Fyodorov a week to get to the north of the Novosibirsk Islands, where the new station will be set up. On the way, the scientists will have to choose a new ice floe for the station.

The NP-34 will open after September 15, after which 14 polar scientists will conduct scientific research for another year.
The evacuation of the NP-33 started on September 4 after the ice floe where it was based wore out, split up into more than 10 pieces and was carried by winds into the neighbouring areas of the Atlantic Ocean.

The NP-33 started work on September 9, 2004. Scientists continued the research into the Central Arctic that Russia began in 1937 at the world's first drifting station NP-1. The research will help scientists to find more about natural processes in the Central Arctic, which could help to explain the causes of global climatic changes.

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RE: Akademik Fyodorov
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In a groundbreaking event in Arctic navigation history, the Russian supply ship Akademik Fyodorov’s has reached the North Pole unassisted by an icebreaker.

Member of Parliament Artur Chilingarov, who is also a renowned Arctic explorer, said the historic voyage, which he described as a "unique and risky mission," had been coordinated from parliament headquarters in Moscow. He said it was the first time in the global history of navigation that an ordinary vessel had successfully made her way through the ice-covered Arctic waters and reached the pole without assistance from an icebreaker.

The Akademik Fyodorov is now heading back to the North Pole 33 drifting station.


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The transport ship Akademik Fyodorov, flagship of the research fleet of the Russian Academy of Sciences, which is currently cruising the high latitudes of the Arctic Ocean has independently crossed the 87th latitude, thus becoming the world’s first ship to approach the North Pole without an icebreaker escort.

The ship set the new record at 12:00 hours GMT, 26 August, 2005.

"Not a single transport ship has ever tried to climb so close towards the Pole without an icebreaker" - Vladimir Strugatsky, vice-president of the Association of Russian Polar Researchers.



The previous record of high-altitude navigation also belongs to this ship. In 2000 it crossed the 82nd parallel on its own in the area of the Mendeleyev Ridge.

The Akademik Fyodorov’s crew will rendezvous and take aboard a research expedition drifting on an ice-flow at the moment, and to land a new expedition to another ice floe.
The ship set sail from the Novosibirsk Islands, has yet to cover a distance of around 360 nautical miles towards the drifting polar station SP-33.

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