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Author Topic: Chinese Nuclear Powered Icebreaker Project  (Read 1724 times)

Offline sferrin

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Chinese Nuclear Powered Icebreaker Project
« on: June 25, 2018, 12:52:11 pm »
"China has opened the bid to construct its first nuclear-powered icebreaker support ship, a move to prepare for the construction of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, military observers said.

China National Nuclear Corporation on Thursday opened public bidding for the nuclear-powered icebreaker ship, its website said.

It will be China's first nuclear-powered icebreaker support ship, and it will be able to break ice, open waterways in the polar region and provide electricity. "


http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articles-view/release/3/194204/china-one-step-closer-to-nuke_powered-carrier-with-bid-for-icebreaker.html

« Last Edit: July 08, 2018, 09:34:00 pm by Jemiba »
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Offline CJGibson

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Offline Hood

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Nice hyerpbole (as ever) in that article.
The USSR completed the Lenin in 1959 yet never completed a nuclear-powered carrier. The Pr.1144 Kirov and Project 1153 Orel nuclear ship programmes didn't begin until the early 1970s, so at least a decade behind any icebreaker experience (if indeed it really was influential to Soviet surface programmes). Of course during 1959 they already had a Pr.627 November in the water.
The Chinese of course have been building nuclear powered submarines since 1974 so they are not exactly novices at nuclear powerplants at sea.

Offline Foo Fighter

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Perhaps the arctic and antarctic should be 'owned' by the UN, but the UN itself needs a sharp knee in the statute books.  This however is off topic so.......

Offline sferrin

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Nice hyerpbole (as ever) in that article.
The USSR completed the Lenin in 1959 yet never completed a nuclear-powered carrier. The Pr.1144 Kirov and Project 1153 Orel nuclear ship programmes didn't begin until the early 1970s, so at least a decade behind any icebreaker experience (if indeed it really was influential to Soviet surface programmes). Of course during 1959 they already had a Pr.627 November in the water.
The Chinese of course have been building nuclear powered submarines since 1974 so they are not exactly novices at nuclear powerplants at sea.

Supposedly their next carrier (#3 - already under construction) will have EMALs and EM arresting gear, and be a full-sized carrier.  Would be a perfect candidate for nuclear power but I'll bet we don't see it until #4.
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Offline sferrin

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Why is China Building a 30,000-Ton Nuclear-Powered Icebreaker?

"What kind of equipment does the People’s Liberation of Army (PLA) Navy lack the most? The answer might be the aircraft carriers and nuclear submarines. What kind of carrier does the PLA Navy lack the most? That must be nuclear-powered carrier. Here come the good news, China will have it soon.

 China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) issued a tender notice to build the nuclear-powered ice-breaking comprehensive support ship on June 21 and announced that the funds required were in place. It means that starting with this nuclear-powered ice-breaking support ship, China has now completed all its preparations to build the first large nuclear-powered surface vessel.

 Why does China take the nuclear-powered icebreaker as its first step to start building nuclear-powered surface ship?

 It's known to all. Research and development of major military weapons platforms is highly rigorous. If that fails, it will adversely affect the PLA Navy's overall planning, but the icebreaker is different.

 The icebreaker can be used for civilian purposes and can generate revenues. Even if the research and development of an icebreaker fails, there won't be serious consequences. Furthermore, it may even be a good thing because we can keep improving the design according to the operational performance and gradually obtain a mature and stable nuclear-powered system. After all, this is the first time that China will build a nuclear-powered surface ship."


http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articles-view/release/3/194320/why-is-china-building-a-30%2C000_ton-nuclear_powered-icebreaker%3F.html

They could have started with a cargo ship like the US did (N.S. Savannah) but nope.  They went with a much more demanding type of ship- an icebreaker. Because they have little interest in the Arctic.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2018, 06:37:03 am by sferrin »
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Offline fredymac

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What the Chinese say is what the government of China says.  Unless you think there is freedom of speech/dissent in China.  The burden of suspicion for a 30,000 ton nuclear icebreaker falls on China due to the combination of recent history (South China sea) and geography.  Other than Russia, nobody has an economic case for such a ship.  Even Canada couldn't muster the resolve to build one.

Offline Archibald

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Very interesting link. another reason, might be that just like Soyuz, Varyag, and Su-30 (and many others) the chinese just "borrowed / bought / stole" (pick your word !)  a technology the old Soviet Union mastered, and that a broke Russia (in the 90's) sold them at bargain price.
I mean, the Lenin nuclear icebreaker, and all its siblings build after it.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear-powered_icebreaker#Russian_nuclear_icebreakers
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Offline pometablava

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Sir, please, avoid politics and personal attack. Stay in the topic or it will be locked

Offline Hobbes

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Very interesting link. another reason, might be that just like Soyuz, Varyag, and Su-30 (and many others) the chinese just "borrowed / bought / stole" (pick your word !)  a technology the old Soviet Union mastered, and that a broke Russia (in the 90's) sold them at bargain price.
I mean, the Lenin nuclear icebreaker, and all its siblings build after it.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear-powered_icebreaker#Russian_nuclear_icebreakers

If they copied the Lenin et al, they'd be in for a nasty surprise if they tried to apply that technology to a carrier 1:1. The Russian icebreakers can't cross the equator: the water in the equatorial zone is too warm for their cooling systems. Not an insurmountable problem, but still.
The Chinese already have reactors they could use for a nuclear carrier, I don't see how an ice breaker would give them information they couldn't get from their SSBN program.

One sneaky application I could see for this icebreaker (but this is pure speculation on my part) is meddling in the disputed islands in the South China Sea: run the icebreaker aground on one of these islands, instant large-scale powerplant for their military installation and a big deterrent against an attack of that island.

Offline Orionblamblam

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One sneaky application I could see for this icebreaker (but this is pure speculation on my part) is meddling in the disputed islands in the South China Sea: run the icebreaker aground on one of these islands, instant large-scale powerplant for their military installation and a big deterrent against an attack of that island.

An interesting idea, but I'd think that would be excessive. Instead of a gigantic ship, the Chinese (or anyone capable of it) could simply build a *small* portable power generating reactor, load it onto an airplane, fly it down, and show it being unloaded. Park said rector in or next to the obvious military target... missile battery, anti-aircraft site, whatever. Then announce to the world what you've got there and basically *dare* anybody to come and take it out. Need not be much of a reactor at all... a couple RTGs might even serve the purpose.
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Offline Jemiba

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This thread is unlocked again and moved to the Naval Projects section. That means, known
points of this design can be discussed here, technical or operational points ! Political points
please keep in the discussion via PM, email or in other fora !

Here an article from sputniknews with a CGI showing, what that ship perhaps could look like
https://sputniknews.com/asia/201701101049446738-china-new-icebreaker/
« Last Edit: July 08, 2018, 09:41:52 pm by Jemiba »
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Offline Triton

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Re: Chinese Nuclear Powered Icebreaker Project
« Reply #12 on: July 09, 2018, 03:27:32 pm »
"China research vessel to get MacGregor cranes"
By Drydock on 30th June 2016

Source:
https://www.drydockmagazine.com/china-research-vessel-to-get-macgregor-cranes/

Quote
MacGregor, part of Cargotec, has won an order to supply MacGregor offshore cranes and a Triplex handling system for a 14,300gt polar research vessel being built for the Polar Research Institute of China. Designed by Aker Arctic Finland, it will be the first vessel of its type to be built in China; the shipyard has yet to be named.

The 122.5m multi-functional icebreaker will be able to handle ice up to 1.5m thick, achieving a continuous icebreaking speed of two to three knots. It will have an endurance of 20,000 nautical miles and with a full 90-person crew, it will be able to cruise for 60 days without re-supply.

The vessel will feature two MacGregor offshore cranes: a 50-tonne SWL telescopic crane with a 15m outreach and a 24-tonne SWL knuckle jib crane with a 12m outreach.

It will also be fitted with a MacGregor Triplex six-tonne SWL telescopic/knuckle jib crane with a 17m outreach and a handling system specifically designed for research equipment. The handling system comprises: a 30-tonne SWL stern-mounted A-frame; a five-tonne SWL multi-functional launch-and-recovery overhead crane for conductivity, temperature and depth (CTD) oceanographic instrumentation; and a piston coring system that includes an eight-tonne SWL corer pipe handler, a 23m corer pipe cradle and a 25-tonne SWL side-mounted A-frame.

With the exception of the cranes, all MacGregor equipment will be served by a common central hydraulic system driven by one hydraulic power unit. MacGregor deliveries are scheduled for completion by the end of 2017.

“Our ability to deliver tailor-made packages of equipment and a reputation for successful low temperature operations were key factors in winning this contract,” says William Storvik, Shiptype Group Sales Manager, MacGregor Offshore Deck Machinery. “MacGregor products have a proven track record of performance in extreme environments, which makes them ideal for this type of vessel. Our combined expertise also ensures good value and performance for the customer and smoothes operations by reducing the number of suppliers that the shipyard and the owner have to deal with.”

“MacGregor is also able to support its products with a strong worldwide service network and the owner is keen to work closely with us on global lifecycle support for the new vessel,” adds Terry Onn, Senior Shiptype Sales Manager, MacGregor Offshore Deck Machinery.

Yuan Shao Hong, Director of Engineering and Secretary of the Polar Research Institute of China’s party committee said at the contract signing: “We are delighted to work together with a world-leading equipment manufacturer like MacGregor to build and deliver one of the best ‘green’ polar research icebreakers, providing the Chinese, as well as global scientists, a good polar research platform and contributing to the world polar research development.”

The Polar Research Institute of China was established in 1989. It is a public welfare institution reporting to China’s State Oceanic Administration. The new vessel will join its existing 1993-delivered icebreaker, Xue Long, which operates in research stations in the Arctic and Antarctic.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2018, 03:35:33 pm by Triton »

Offline Hobbes

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Re: Chinese Nuclear Powered Icebreaker Project
« Reply #13 on: July 10, 2018, 12:27:51 am »
"China research vessel to get MacGregor cranes"
By Drydock on 30th June 2016

Source:
https://www.drydockmagazine.com/china-research-vessel-to-get-macgregor-cranes/

That source talks about a 14,000 ton icebreaker with an endurance of 20,000 miles, being built for the Polar Research Institute of China, designed by Aker Arctic Finland.
That sounds like a different vessel than the 30 kt nuclear-powered one from the original post.

Offline chuck4

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Re: Chinese Nuclear Powered Icebreaker Project
« Reply #14 on: August 16, 2018, 08:19:53 pm »
Would the new icebreaker be called Nukey McNukeface?