Polar research vessel Kronprins Haakon

Norway’s new Polar research vessel Kronprins Haakon was damaged on her first actual trip into the Arctic ice with 35 researchers on board. She only reached the same latitude as Fridtjof Nansen did with the Fram in 1895:

Now with working link.

Here’s a working link and a Google translation of the article:


Norway’s new icebreaker to 1.4 billion damaged after meeting with polar ice*

The test trip to the ice north of Svalbard had already gone better than expected.

Norway’s new pride, the research ship “Crown Prince Haakon”, was built specifically to take researchers into iced areas in the Arctic and Antarctica.

The Institute of Marine Research said the test trip had shown that the ship was able to withstand more ice than it was built for.

But when 35 researchers in July set out on what was to become the first proper trip into the Arctic Ocean, there was a boom stop after meeting with the ice. It was Klassekampen who told about it first.

With an oil leak, an engine out of service and ice in the propellers, the actual crown jewel in Norwegian marine research, a ship of more than 1.4 billion, had to return to a workshop in Harstad without having come further than the Fram expedition in 1895.

  • During icebreaking, a leak occurred in one of the propeller housings. Basically, the ice we hit on should not be a hindrance. The ice conditions were within what the vessel was built for, and it should withstand that strain as we see it.

It says department manager and shipping manager of the Marine Research Institute, Per Nieuwejaar, who is responsible for the operation of the vessel.

The ongoing cruise was immediately interrupted. Now, several important research stalls are in danger.

Takes the bill up with the yard

  • There are cruises in line until New Year. Hopefully, we are on our way again according to plan shortly. It will show up now, says Nieuwejaar.

  • The problem is not big now, but it could be that if we overlook what indicates errors. It says the captain of “Crown Prince Haakon” Karl Robert Røttingen.

On Wednesday, the ship will be docked in Harstad. There is the manufacturer in place with experts who will assess what has happened and the size of the damage.

  • We must document the damage and afterwards sit down and agree on what is the cause, if we at all find it. The cruising cost goes completely to the University of Tromsø, but the repair is a matter we must discuss with the yard and the manufacturer of the propeller system, says Nieuwejaar.

The canceled cruise is the University of Tromsø - the Arctic University of Norway (UiT) who has to pay for, even though the researchers did not get all the samples they sailed for.

Have already canceled the next cruise as well

The icing research vessel will be one of the world’s most advanced, with both helicopter hangers and remote controlled submarine as part of the standard equipment.

The ship is classified as polar code 3. The code characterizes ships that are able to withstand breaking annual ice of up to one meter.

UiT is planning to use the ship the most. The state is formally the owner of the ship through the Norwegian Polar Institute.

But the collaboration with the Italian shipyard that has built the ship went all but smoothly, says director of the Norwegian Polar Institute Ole Arve Misund.

The vessel was, among other things, delivered more than one year late. Only a year ago, “Crown Prince Haakon” was finished.

Then the ship could head towards what Misund describes as a very successful cruise in Antarctica.

It was only when the ship headed north, from the home port in Tromsø, that the encounter with the ice led to a temporary stop. The injury has also had consequences for several of the plans for the icebreaker and the researchers on board.

In addition to canceling this cruise earlier than planned, the next cruise has also been canceled.

  • So we hope that the damage is not too difficult to rectify so that we do not have to cancel more. The repairs and the time will show, says Misund.

(* “polisen” first translated to “police” :smiley: )

The new ice breaking research ship for British Antarctic Survey Sir David Attenborough has finally been named in a ceremony at the building yard Cammell Laird in Liverpool:

See the similarity with the Kronprins Haakon?

Maybe not so surprising since both were designed by what was Rolls Royce’s design office (NVC) in Aalesund, Norway (Now Kongsberg Marine)

The two vessels which she will replace RRS “James Clark Ross” and RRS "Ernest Shackleton, was returned to owner GC Rieber in late April this year, after 30 years of polar service for the British Antarctic Survey.

You mean “Boaty McBoatface” right?

That name was given to a AUV she will be carrying.

That blunt icebreaker bow is going to be hellishly uncomfortable in open water.

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She will always be Boaty McBoatface to me!