Icebreaker construction updates

This graphic shows the 229 steel ‘sections’ (consolidated into 57 ‘blocks’) that make up the hull and superstructure of Australia's new icebreaker, RSV Nuyina. Some 10,000 tonnes of steel was used in construction. The placement of the blocks was completed in early 2019 and internal fit-out of the ship is underway.

  • Aerial photo of the Nuyina beside the wharf in Romania.

    New icebreaker propels to life

    4 February 2020

    The propulsion system of Australia’s icebreaker, RSV Nuyina, has heaved to life with the turning of the starboard propeller for the first time.

  • The oily water separator can remove three times as much oil as a standard ship’s plant.

    Sailing the green seas

    3 December 2019

    It’s not easy being green but the icebreaker Nuyina project team is employing a range of environmental strategies to help the ship sail lightly on the Southern Ocean.

  • The Nuyina under construction alongside the wharf in Romania.

    Up close with Nuyina

    7 November 2019

    Check out the latest video of the Nuyina under construction at the Damen shipyards in Romania.

  • Wharfside view of RSV Nuyina in Galati.

    Portside with Nuyina

    8 August 2019

    Australian Antarctic Division Director, Kim Ellis, toured the RSV Nuyina at the Galați shipyards, as construction nears completion ahead of sea-ice trials early next year.

  • Diesel generators of the Nuyina.

    Diesel generators start up

    26 July 2019

    The RSV Nuyina's diesel generators started up for the first time this week.

  • View of a 16.3 metre long barge under construction.

    New watercraft construction barging ahead

    23 May 2019

    Construction of two 'heavy lift' barges for the new Antarctic icebreaker, RSV Nuyina, is underway at Tasmanian shipbuilders, Taylor Bros.

  • Bow view of Nuyina painted in international orange.

    Readiness testing for Harbour Acceptance Trials

    10 May 2019

    Australia’s Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina is being readied for ‘harbour acceptance trials’ next month and receiving a final coat of paint.

  • The Nuyina's two 55 tonne cranes are in place and the bridge windows installed.

    Nuyina's internal fit-out

    22 February 2019

    Despite blowing snow and temperatures as low as −10 degrees Celsius, construction is progressing on Australia’s new icebreaker, including on the internal fit out.

  • The Nuyina docked by a wharf in Romania.

    Icebreaker's internal fit-out shapes up

    2 November 2019

    Australia’s new icebreaker RSV Nuyina is looking more like a home away from home for scientists, expeditioners and crew, as the internal fit-out takes shape.

  • Nuyina in the dry dock with two cranes installed.

    Nuyina cranes and funnels

    15 February 2019

    The RSV Nuyina’s two 55 tonne cranes are now installed, and the aluminium cladding for the ship’s funnels has been lowered into place.

  • Aerial view of icebreaker Nuyina alongside a wharf in Romania.

    Superstructure blocks in place

    9 January 2019

    All the major superstructure blocks on Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker are now in place.

  • The Nuyina in the wet dock crowned with a crows nest, 32 metre-long navigation bridge and science observation deck.

    Navigation bridge tops icebreaker

    20 November 2018

    The crows nest, navigation bridge and science observation deck have been added to Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina.

  • Bow of Nuyina in wet dock.

    Ship superstructure on the rise

    5 November 2018

    Since Australia’s new icebreaker, RSV Nuyina, was moved to a wet dock in late September, construction and internal fit-out has quickly progressed.

  • Three tugs position the ship for its return to the wet dock, bow first.

    Antarctic icebreaker takes a turn

    19 October 2018

    Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina has been turned in the wet dock to facilitate construction of the ‘superstructure’, or decks above the hull.

  • The Nuyina in her final position in the wet dock.

    Antarctic icebreaker afloat

    22 September 2018

    Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker, RSV Nuyina, is now floating, after more than 50 Olympic swimming pools of water were pumped into the docks where the ship is being built.

  • This image shows the crosshair frame for a laser target point, mounted in a ‘gondola’ during alignment checks.

    Icebreaker construction requires laser precision

    6 August 2018

    Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker, RSV Nuyina, has reached another milestone in construction, with the laser-precision alignment of her propeller shafts.

  • The blades of the ship's propellers covered in a blue protective coating

    Icebreaker construction propels ahead

    25 May 2018

    Key pieces of the RSV Nuyina's propulsion system have recently arrived at the Damen Shipyard at Galati, including the propellers and propeller hubs.

  • Bow of the ship with scaffolding surrounding it.

    Anchors, ice knives and thrusters

    4 May 2018

    The hull of Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina is rapidly taking shape.

  • The base of the ship’s hull takes shape in the dry dock at Damen Shipyards in Romania

    New icebreaker looking ship shape

    16 March 2018

    Construction of Australia’s new scientific icebreaker RSV Nuyina has reached another major milestone, with more than 7000 tonnes of steel cut, and the assembly of the base of the hull in the dry dock.

  • A graphic representation of the RSV Nuyina with the two barges.

    Icebreaker construction barges ahead

    3 November 2017

    Construction of Australia’s new Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina reached a numerical milestone this week with 5000 tonnes of steel cut at Damen Shipyards in Romania.

  • photo of man welding coins

    Foundation of Australia’s new icebreaker laid

    25 August 2017

    The first building block of Australia’s new icebreaker has been welded into place at a keel laying ceremony in Romania overnight.

  • Tradesperson working on steel with bright flash

    Moon pool takes shape

    25 July 2017

    More than 2391 tonnes of steel has been cut to form the bottom of Australia's new icebreaker, which will be home to the ship's moon pool.

  • Man in hard hat about to hit button on panel

    Construction commences

    1 June 2017

    The jigsaw pieces of Australia’s new icebreaker are being created, with laser and plasma technology cutting sections of steel to fit together to form the new ship.