Russia Plans Construction of $120M Arctic Research Station

While it will be mainly used for research, the platform will also be used by the Russian Armed Forces.

📅   Tue October 10, 2017 - National Edition
Emily Buenzle


Thinning Arctic ice is prompting Russian researchers to look for a better location for their research stations. Arctic ice thinning means a greater risk for cracks, which can lead to more accidents resulting in equipment losses, the Independent Barents Observer reported.
Thinning Arctic ice is prompting Russian researchers to look for a better location for their research stations. Arctic ice thinning means a greater risk for cracks, which can lead to more accidents resulting in equipment losses, the Independent Barents Observer reported.

Thinning Arctic ice is prompting Russian researchers to look for a better location for their research stations. Arctic ice thinning means a greater risk for cracks, which can lead to more accidents resulting in equipment losses, the Independent Barents Observer reported.

Researchers are now looking to build a $120 million ice-class drifting platform, named “North Pole.” The platform, which is part of Russia's Arctic Development Program, will be used by the State Hydrometeorology Service to study the Arctic and take ice measurements. The platform will also be used by the Russian Armed Forces, the Independent Barents Observer reported.

This platform will be another in a line of Russian Arctic stations built on drifting ice, beginning with the “Severny Polyus-1” that rifted near the North Pole between 1937 and 1938. While most of the stations drifted for more than three years, the last in 2015 only drifted for five months, the Independent Barents Observer reported.

The Construction

The platform will be built so that it can operate on location without involving icebreakers, the Independent Barents Observer reported. It will also contain a fuel-friendly engine, which will allow it to drift for three to four years. The Admiralty Yard in St. Petersburg is bidding for the construction contract, the Independent Barents Observer reported.