Antarctic icebreaker takes a turn

The ship in the wet dock being prepared to move out into the River Danube.
The ship in the wet dock being prepared to move out into the River Danube. (Photo: Michiel Jordaan)
The Nuyina in the river, with the new superstructure visible.The Nuyina in the River Danube.Three tugs position the ship for its return to the wet dock, bow first.Ropes and tug boats help manoeuvre the ship into the correct position. The ship enters the wet dock, pushed by a tug boat from behind.The ship in its new position in the wet dock.

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 turn-around comes only one month after the ship was moved from the dry dock to the wet dock, to begin the next phase of construction (see Antarctic icebreaker afloat).

Three tugs manoeuvred the more than 10,000 tonne ship into the River Danube, where it was turned and pushed back into the wet dock, bow first.

Australian Antarctic Division Icebreaker Project Manager, Mr Nick Browne, said the ship was turned to allow the shipyard’s cranes to access the forward part of the vessel.

“Since the Nuyina entered the wet dock the ship-builders have done a lot of work on the mid-ship superstructure and the area around the aft science working deck,” Mr Browne said.

“Now that the ship has turned, construction will focus on the forward part of the superstructure that includes the navigation bridge, extending forward to the cargo holds, hatch covers and forward weather deck.”

The ship will be turned again to complete the aft part of the ship, including the helideck, heli-hangar and funnel stack.