Atomic Icebreaker “Lenin”
First in the Arctic – first in the world
Atomic icebreaker “Lenin” was the first civil vessel to have a nuclear power plant. That is why all her achievements since commissioning and up to the new generation atomic icebreakers were unique and some of them remain unsurpassed to the present moment. “Lenin” was commissioned on December 03, 1959 and up to now is the only icebreaker which had her nuclear power plant replaced with the other. This icebreaker transported and disembarked winter expedition on the ice to deploy the drifting polar station “SP-10” in 1961. “Lenin” and her crew started the first prolonged navigation on the Northern Sea Route from Murmansk to Dudinka and back in 1970. Half a year later “Lenin” together with icebreaker “Vladivostok” performed super-early high-latitude voyage along the Northern Sea Route to the port of Pevek. During the First Yamal Experimental voyage in 1976 “Lenin” piloted mv “Pavel Ponomarev” with the cargoes for gas industry to the cape of Harasavey. “Lenin” was the first of all atomic icebreakers to reach the year limit of uninterrupted operations. On April 10, 1974 atomic icebreaker “Lenin” was awarded the highest order of the country – the Order of Lenin.
The atomic icebreaker became a true forge of professionals for the whole atomic fleet. 1327 specialists were trained on board the icebreaker during the first 20 years. They then got their positions on other atomic icebreakers and in “Atomflot” divisions. Those people continued and further developed the good traditions of atomic icebreaking fleet which were formed onboard “Lenin”. The names of captain Pavel Ponomarev, Boris Sokolov, chief mechanic Alexander Sledzyuk are forever written into the history book of Arctic exploration. Atomic icebreaker “Lenin” became the museum of a civil vessel with a nuclear power plant. She was berthed at the seaport of Murmansk on May 05, 2009 and is now open for public.
Atomic Icebreaker “Arktika” ”
Destination – North Pole
On August 17, 1977 icebreaker “Arktika” was the first to reach the North Pole sailing in ice on her own. The dream of many seafarers all over the world came true. The task comparable to the man’s travel to space was successfully completed by the crew of the icebreaker with the most powerful, effective and clean power plant assembled of two atomic reactors. On September 14, 1977 atomic icebreaker “Arktika” was awarded the Order of October Revolution. “Arktika” has performed many other remarkable voyages that changed cardinally the approach to Arctic navigation. The experimental voyage together with the icebreaker “Murmansk” to the Yamal Peninsula in February 1977 is among them. The most difficult but successfully done were the operations aimed at freeing cargo vessels from the heaviest ice grip in the Chukchi Sea in autumn 1983 when ice conditions in the eastern part of the Arctic were the hardest faced in 20th century. At different times the icebreaker was commanded by the distinguished captains Yuriy Kuchiev, Vasiliy Golokhvastov and Anatoliy Lamehov.
Atomic lighter and container carrier “Sevmorput” ”
A unique atomic cargo vessel
This cargo vessel with a nuclear power plant was not the first one, but she is the only operational atomic transport vessel at present. The predecessor of “Sevmorput”, US atomic cargo and passenger vessel “Savanna”, was converted into a museum. German cargo vessel “Otto Hahn” lost the status of atomic vessel for the reason of being economically inefficient.
It was proven during the first years of operations on the route Odessa – Vietnam – Vladivostok and others that atomic lighter carrier “Sevmorput” can work in any part of the World Ocean. Frequent checks carried out on “Sevmorput” against her compliance with IMO safety requirements produced positive conclusions. For some years the unique vessel was transporting cargoes on the Northern Sea Route between Murmansk and Dudinka thus substituting 2-3 specialized bulkers.