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Russian Geographic Society to have its own research ship in 2012 – Shoigu

October 25, 2011, 17:46 UTC+3

The Russian Geographic Society will have its own research ship already in 2012, Emergency Situations Minister

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VLADIVOSTOK, October 25 (Itar-Tass) —— The Russian Geographic Society will have its own research ship already in 2012, Emergency Situations Minister, Russian Geographic Society President Sergei Shoigu said on Tuesday.

He had visited the Far Eastern shipyard in Vladivostok to take a look at the Prof. Khlyustin ship of the Nevelsky Maritime State University.

The minister ordered to start repairs of the ship, which would make research for the Russian Geographic Society.

“Russia and its Geographic Society must have a modern and well-equipped ship to perform a broad range of missions, from deepwater probes of the World Ocean to expeditions with goals of state importance,” he said. The repairs of the Prof. Khlyustin will begin in Vladivostok and continue at a shipyard in China. They will be over in 2012.

The Prof. Klyustin will carry modern equipment, such as deepwater research apparatuses, oceanographic research instruments and satellite information and navigation systems.

The ice-class vessel has an unlimited zone of operation, circumpolar areas included.

In addition, Russia will have five large ships for servicing explorers in the Arctic and Antarctica before 2020. These would be multi-role vessels to deliver expeditions and cargo and make oceanographic research and environmental monitoring, the Federal Hydro-Meteorological Service’s Alexander Frolov earlier.

It is planned to enlarge the expedition fleet within the framework of the Russian strategy for Antarctica in the period until 2020, Frolov said.

"We plan to increase the level of studies in the Pacific sector and to restore the Russkaya and Leningradskaya stations in Antarctica. So far these stations are operating in the automatic mode," Frolov said.

The research vessel named after distinguished Soviet geographer, Academician Alexei Treshnikov, will be put into service in 2012.

The academician had been in charge of scientific expeditions and the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute for years. Presidential Representative for Arctic and Antarctic International Cooperation Artur Chilingarov proposed to name the new ship after the scholar.

The Federal Hydro-Meteorological Service ordered the vessel. The initial cost of the project was 5.3 billion rubles.

The ship will eventually replace the Academician Fyodorov and give support to the Russian Antarctic expedition - bring in explorers and cargo, conduct oceanic research, and take away litter from Antarctica.

The Baltsudproyekt Design Bureau, a branch of the Krylov Central Research Institute, designed the new ship, which would carry eight modern laboratories for rapid processing of information about oceanic and atmospheric conditions and results of scientific experiments.

The ship will move at the speed of 16 knots (30 kilometers per hour) in open waters and two knots (3.8 kilometers per hour) through the ice with the thickness of 1.1 meters. The ship will be capable of autonomous voyages of 45 days on the range of 15,000 nautical miles. It will carry a crew of 59 and 80 researchers, as well as two Kamov Ka-32 helicopters.

The vessel will have the length of 133 meters, the width of 23 meters and the draught of 8.5 meters. It will travel at 16 knots in clean water, and two knots through the ice more than one meters thick.

"The new research vessel will no less than double the capacity of Russian Arctic and Antarctic expeditions," Frolov said.

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