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AGB - Chinese Icebreakers

An icebreaker is a service vessel used to break up the surface of the ice, to open a waterway, to ensure that ships enter and leave the frozen port, anchorage, or to guide the ship to sail in the ice zone. If the ice layer is thicker, the "crash" ice breaking method is adopted. Crashing the surface of the icebreaker's bow is shallow, and it will easily rush to the ice, and the hull will laminate the thick ice below into pieces. Then the icebreaker retreats a certain distance, then rushes to the front of the ice and smashes the ice under the boat. Repeatedly, a new channel was opened. Another method is to use a propeller to smash the ice when the knife is used. The fuel oil-powered icebreaker uses diesel engines to drive the engine to generate electricity, and the electric motor drives the propeller (combined unit drive). The driving power can reach millions of watts, which can meet the needs of long-term ice-breaking navigation.

In 1864, the Russian small ship "Pilot" was converted into the world's first icebreaker, to maintain the freeze of Kronstadt navigation routes, and the United Kingdom for the Russian-built "Yelmark" icebreaker was the first icebreaker to sail in the Arctic.

At the beginning of the 20th century, the Haihe Channel was shut down due to freezing every winter, causing huge losses to Tianjin's commercial trade. In May 1911, the Tianjin Foreign Merchants Association first proposed to the Haihe Engineering Bureau to use the icebreaker to keep the Haihe River open for navigation in winter. In 1912, the Haihe Engineering Bureau ordered two icebreakers at the Jiangnan Shipyard for the first time. In 1913, the first "Tongling" steel icebreaker was built. The "Tongling" icebreaker designed and built by Jiangnan Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. solves the contradiction between shallow draft and the weight of the ship. It can adapt to the conditions of the Haihe River and smoothly carry out the ice-breaking task.

The ship is 39.15 meters (128.5 feet) long, 8.39 meters (27.5 feet) wide, 4.27 meters (14 feet) deep, 2.75 meters (9 feet) draft, 470 tons of displacement, 527 kW (700 hp), used good. In November 1913, the newly built icebreakers "Tong Ling" and "King Ling" first carried out icebreaking operations in Haihe. After that, the Haihe Engineering Bureau successively built four icebreakers, namely No Ling, Qing Ling, Working Ling and Feiling.

From December 1935 to March 1936, the most serious ice situation occurred in Tianjin Port since the establishment of Haihe Engineering Bureau. The ice thickness was 0.3 meters to 0.6 meters. Some ships were trapped by ice for more than a month. The icebreakers slammed into the ice overnight and rescued 65 ships from danger. During the Anti-Japanese War, the Japanese Puppet Army occupied the Haihe Engineering Bureau, and the icebreaker Tong Ling sank in the vicinity of Lao Tieshan in the Bohai Bay. The remaining ships were still in use after liberation. The success of Jiangnan Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. for the manufacture of icebreakers in Tianjin attracted the attention of relevant parties. The sea port of Vladivostok in Russia also ordered two icebreakers to the Jiangnan Shipyard, which is 34.12 meters (112 feet) long, 6.7 meters (22 feet) wide, 3.5 meters (11.5 feet) deep, and 2.4 meters (8 feet) draft. The displacement is 375 tons. A famous "engine" number, a name "Ma Shimen".

Sailing in the polar waters is very demanding, and the difficulty is far greater than ordinary waters. When icebreakers sail in the Arctic and the Arctic, they usually include open water navigation, ice floes, and continental margin ice. The most complicated one is the navigation of the continental margin. The so-called continental margin ice zone is a sea ice zone that is connected to the coast and has no water. At this time, it is necessary to adopt various special methods of ice breaking, such as the method of spinning back the ice, the method of breaking the ice on foot. The method of breaking the ice on foot is to use the hull movement energy to break the ice, and the icebreaker slowly advances through the steps of collision, reversing and collision. The icebreaking grade is divided into 1 to 7 levels, the first level is the strongest in breaking ice, and the seventh is the weakest. Icebreakers are not invincible, and the actual ability to break ice is limited by many conditions.

The icebreaker hull is wide (longitudinal, wide), the hull is thick, the horsepower is large, and the hull has different pressure tanks in each area. The power is mostly symmetrical multi-axis, multi-propeller configuration (generally equipped with 2-4 propellers). The ice-breaking ship is equipped with two propellers at the stern and near the side of the bow. The bow propeller draws water from under the ice, weakening the support of the ice layer and making it a flaky split. The boat advanced under the push of the two propellers.

Icebreakers generally use two methods of icebreaking. When the ice layer is no more than 1.5 meters thick, the "continuous" icebreaking method is often used. It relies mainly on the strength of the propeller and the bow of the ship to break open the ice layer and sail 9.2 kilometers per hour in the ice sea.

The construction of polar scientific research vessels, polar heavy-duty deck transport vessels, and polar-consolidation tankers indicates that China has basically mastered the construction capabilities of high-grade icebreakers; as an Arctic stakeholder, China also needs to maintain the Arctic. Regional peace, stability and prosperity play a more active role.

The first time that a Chinese merchant ship crossed the northeastern Arctic waterway can be traced back to 2013. In that year, the Yongsheng freighter under the COSCO SHIPPING Company became the first Chinese merchant ship to complete the Asia-Europe route through the Arctic Northeast Passage. From 2013 to 2017, only COSCO Shipping Special Shipping Co., Ltd. dispatched 10 ships and performed 14 voyage missions to the northeastern Arctic waterway.

The northeastern Arctic waterway is the shortest sea transportation route connecting Northeast Asia and Northwest Europe. The larger the deadweight and the more expensive the fuel price in the market, the contribution of the benefits of the northeastern Arctic waterway become more obvious.

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Page last modified: 01-08-2021 14:08:50 ZULU