ST. PETERSBURG, November 3. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin took part in the flag-raising ceremony on the new icebreaker Viktor Chernomyrdin in St. Petersburg on Tuesday.
The ship is the largest and most powerful non-nuclear icebreaker in the world, designed to provide uninterrupted escorting of vessels in the Gulf of Finland. It can also operate in the Arctic and Antarctic.
The ceremony was also attended by Transport Minister Evgeny Dietrich, Governor of St. Petersburg Alexander Beglov, General Director of the Russian marine ports authority, Rosmorport, Andrey Lavrishchev and Vitaly Chernomyrdin, the son of the ex-prime minister. The event took place on the territory of the Marine Facade passenger port.
Earlier, CEO of the United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) Alexei Rakhmanov reported that the diesel-electric icebreaker, named after the Russian statesman, the prime minister of the Russian Federation in 1992-1998, Viktor Chernomyrdin, would be commissioned in St. Petersburg on November 3, on the anniversary of the death of the former head of the Russian government.
The Viktor Chernomyrdin icebreaker of project 22600 escorts vessels through ice and provides for underwater work at oil platforms, laying of underwater pipelines, exploration of the seabed and delivery of Arctic and Antarctic expeditions. It can accommodate 90 men besides the crew and has research laboratories. The icebreaker can operate as a fire vessel, extinguishing blaze by foam and water. It has a displacement of 22,258 tonnes and can develop a speed of 17 knots in ice-free water and that of 2 knots in two-meter thick ice. The ship is highly maneuverable and is equipped with a system of pneumatic hull cleaning against icing. The crew comprises 38 men.
The construction began at the Admiratly Shipyards (incorporated into the United Shipbuilding Corporation) in December 2012. It was initially planned to hand it over to Rosmorport in December 2019.
In November 2018, a fire broke out aboard the vessel, which was under construction back then, damaging part of the icebreaker's equipment. By now, the ship is fully ready for commissioning and trials.