The fleet solution provided by Aker Yards' double-acting vessels significantly improves Norilsk Nickel's operational efficiency. The vessels can navigate Arctic Ocean routes unassisted year-round; the company's current cargo fleet requires the deployment of icebreakers in winter. The vessels contracted by Norilsk Nickel transport metallurgical products from Dudinka, on the Yenisey river, to Murmansk.
The vessels in the newbuilding series ordered by Norilsk Nickel are 169 meters long and 23.1 meters wide. With a draught of nine meters for winter deployment under heavy ice conditions, their deadweight tonnage is 14,500 (summer: 10 m draught; 18,000 t). Container stowage capacity is some 650 TEU; containers with non-standard dimensions and other cargo can also be transported. Aker Yards' shipyards group in Finland delivered MS Norilskiy Nickel to Open Joint Stock Company (OJSC) MMC Norilsk Nickel on 11 April 2006. MS Norilskiy Nickel was a prototype built as a cooperative project among the Aker Yards Group's shipyards in Helsinki and Warnemünde. Helsinki-based Aker Arctic, a world-leading ice technology laboratory and vessel developer, established optimal design, performance, cost, and technological solutions for the vessel through several feasibility studies and ice model tests. MS Norilskiy Nickel has successfully demonstrated its performance and logistics efficiency on the Dudinka - Murmansk route since it went into service in April 2006. The decision to order four additional (plus one option) double-acting vessel newbuildings also follows up on the successful ice trials of the Norilskiy Nickel in the Kara Sea area in March 2006. The vessel exceeded all contractual performance requirements. It showed excellent sea-handling and moved efficiently through ice ridges with depth of more than ship's own draught as well as the flat, 1.5-meter-thick ice specified in the vessel's newbuilding contract. Jürgen Kenneman, President of Aker Yards' Merchant Vessels business area, comments: «This contract represents an important step in repositioning Merchant Vessels to deliver more specialized and innovative vessels. The Norilsk Nickel deliveries capitalize on Aker Yards' unique technologies and experience in designing and building cost-effective ships that operate under harsh arctic conditions.»
Vessel type: container/cargo ship for arctic operation Contract value: approx. EUR 320 million for four vessels Yard: Aker Yards, Germany
Aker Yards ASA
Tore Langballe, SVP Corporate Communications & IR
Aker Yards ASA is an international shipbuilding group focusing on sophisticated vessels. The Group has a strong position in terms of innovation, product range, technology, experience, and capacity. The product range includes cruise ship & ferries, merchant vessels, and offshore & specialized vessels. Aker Yards comprises 15 yards in Brazil, Finland, France, Germany, Norway, and Romania. Aker Yards has approximately 16,000 employees. www.akeryards.com
Aker Yards is part of the Aker Group ( www.akerasa.com ), a leading multi-industry powerhouse with more than 43,000 employees and annual revenues of EUR 7.5 billion. Aker owns 50.4 percent of Aker Yards shares. The Aker Group is also a significant participant in the oil & gas business as well as the fisheries industry.
Aker Arctic ( www.akerarctic.fi ) is an Aker Group company specializing in the development of new, innovative solutions for arctic operations. In March 2006, Aker Arctic moved into its new laboratory and R&D facility in Helsinki, Finland, which has a state-of-the art ice model test basin. The company also provides arctic engineering services to the shipping and offshore industries. Two series of double-acting arctic shuttle tankers are currently under construction using Aker Arctic's double-acting technology.
17.07.2006 Source: Hugin Press Release