The NS Yamal (Russian: Яма́л) is a Russian Arktika class
nuclear-powered icebreaker operated by Atomflot (formerly by the
Murmansk Shipping Company). It is named after the Yamal Peninsula in
Northwest Siberia; the name means End of the Land in Nenets.
Laid down in Leningrad in 1986, and launched in October 1992, after
the breakup of the Soviet Union, it never filled its designed role
of keeping shipping lanes open. It has always carried passengers on
arctic excursions. Yamal took an excursion to the North Pole to
celebrate the Millennium. Yamal is the 12th surface ship ever to
reach the north pole.
The Yamal is equipped with a double hull. The outer hull is 48 mm
thick where ice is met and 25 mm elsewhere and has a polymer coating
to reduce friction. There is water ballast between the inner and
outer hulls which can be shifted in order to aid icebreaking.
Icebreaking is also assisted by an air bubbling system which can
deliver 24 m³/s of air from jets 9 m below the surface. The Yamal
can break ice while making way either forwards or backwards.
Yamal is one of the Russian "Arktika" family of icebreakers, the
most powerful icebreakers in the world. These ships must cruise in
cold water to cool their reactors, so they cannot pass through the
tropics to undertake voyages in the Southern hemisphere.
Yamal carries one helicopter and several Zodiac boats. Radio and
satellite communications systems are installed which can provide
navigation, telephone, fax, and email services. Amenities include a
large dining room (capable of holding all 100 passengers in one
sitting), a library, passenger lounge, auditorium, volleyball court,
gymnasium, heated indoor swimming pool, a sauna, and an infirmary.
She is equipped with 50 passenger cabins and suites, all with
toilets, exterior windows, a television, and a desk.
Yamal also played a significant role in creation of annual travel
expeditions to the North Pole, being one of the few vessels capable
of getting there and bringing tourists with it in safety. Since 1993
the icebreaker was operated by Murmansk Shipping Company and in
2001-2008 the operation was made by Murmansk Shipping Company and
Poseidon Expeditions. Yamal has made a total of 47 voyages to the
North Pole. Now it is continue...