• 2020 June 1 18:21

    Christophe de Margerie completes eastbound transit of NSR two months earlier than usual

    The LNGC covered 2,563 nautical miles at a speed deemed safe given the navigational conditions

    On 31 May 2020 at 06:00 Moscow time Christophe de Margerie, an icebreaking LNG carrier owned and operated by SCF Group, successfully completed her passage across the Northern Sea Route (NSR), bound for China with a cargo of LNG for the Yamal LNG project, Sovcomflot says in its press release.

    For the first time, a large-capacity vessel of this type has crossed the NSR eastbound in May, when ice conditions in the eastern sector of the NSR remain challenging. Traditionally, the navigation in this sector commences only in July.

    The passage from the Port of Sabetta to Cape Dezhnev took the vessel 12 days to complete, during which the LNGC covered 2,563 nautical miles at a speed deemed safe given the navigational conditions.

    While on the NSR, Christophe de Margerie was escorted by Atomflot's nuclear-powered icebreaker Yamal. The LNGC has transited the most challenging parts of the route with Yamal’s support, including fast-ice fields in the Vilkitsky Strait, as well as hummocky ice floes in the East Siberian and the Chukchi seas.

    Sergey Frank, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sovcomflot, commented: “Over many years, SCF has been steadily undertaking increasingly challenging transportation projects in the Arctic seas, in partnership with Atomflot, Russian energy companies, and R&D institutions. The Company has accumulated unique experience of safely operating large-capacity vessels of high ice class, purpose designed for the harsh environments of the NSR. Thorough preparation has allowed us to make the next step and safely carry out this unique voyage, fully in line with SCF’s core principle ‘Safety Comes First.’ On behalf of the Board of Directors and all SCF Group personnel I congratulate Sergey Gen, the Master of the LNG carrier, and all her crew, and thank them for their excellent performance. I express our appreciation to Alexander Lembrik, the Master of the icebreaker Yamal, and all the icebreaker crew for their escort.”

    Igor Tonkovidov, President and CEO of Sovcomflot, commented: “This successful voyage across the NSR, in May, allows us to move one step closer to realising the full transit potential of the Northern Sea Route, marking an important expansion in the shipping opportunities available to Arctic industrial projects in particular. Even in the challenging ice conditions encountered during this time of the year, choosing the NSR allows for a significant reduction in the length of a voyage delivering LNG to APAC ports compared with using the Suez Canal. A shorter voyage both allows to optimise logistics and reduce the carbon footprint of the shipping. What’s more, the vessel that began this new era in Arctic shipping both carries LNG, the cleanest fuel currently available, and uses LNG fuel herself, which drastically reduces the vessel’s impact on the environment. The success of this challenging voyage was possible thanks to the high level of training and professionalism of the vessel’s crew and SCF personnel ashore, as well as to an exhaustive and nuanced risk analysis and close collaboration with all the other parties involved in the voyage, such as NOVATEK and Atomflot.”

    Sergey Gen, Master of Christophe de Margerie, commented: “The ice conditions encountered during the voyage matched our forecast: on some segments, the movement was heavily obstructed, but the crew was well prepared to handle it. The voyage has proven Christophe de Margerie’s excellent icebreaking, manoeuvring, and structural capabilities, both when following an icebreaker or sailing independently in various modes. I also want to give credit to the crews of both Christophe de Margerie and Yamal for the high level of coordination between the two vessels during the NSR passage.”

    The voyage has provided extensive information about the ice conditions along the eastern part of the NSR, whilst allowing the coordination between the LNG carrier and escorting icebreaker to be honed under extreme conditions. This will prove valuable for planning transportation solutions for future industrial projects in the Arctic, and could help expedite the future growth of NSR cargo traffic. This information will also be reflected in the design of future generations of Arctic vessels.

    In 2010-2011, SCF Group together with NOVATEK completed several experimental transit voyages along the NSR, proving the technical and economic feasibility of using this route as a transport corridor for large-scale cargo ships. These high-latitude voyages have laid the foundations for the successful implementation of the Yamal LNG project and opened a new deep-water route to the north of the New Siberian Islands archipelago for commercial shipping.

    In 2017, SCF Group introduced Christophe de Margerie, the world’s first icebreaking LNG carrier, the lead ship in the series of ice class Arc7 vessels, with a cargo capacity of 172,600 cbm each, purpose designed for serving the Yamal LNG project year-round in the Russian Arctic. The vessel has excellent icebreaking and manoeuvering capabilities, as well as a high power capacity, which allows her to safely operate in the extreme climatic and ice conditions of high latitudes.

    In December 2017, Christophe de Margerie transported the first cargo of LNG produced by the Yamal LNG plant. The same year, Christophe de Margerie was named ‘Engineering Project of the Year’ at the 2017 S&P Global Platts Global Energy Awards.

    For Christophe de Margerie, the current voyage became the 45th since the start of Yamal LNG’s operations.

    Sovcomflot (SCF Group) is one of the world's leading energy shipping companies, specialising in the transportation of crude oil, petroleum products, and liquefied gas, as well as the servicing of offshore oil and gas production. The Group’s fleet includes 146 vessels with a total deadweight of 12.6 million tonnes. More than 80 vessels have an ice class.

    Sovcomflot is involved in servicing large oil and gas projects in Russia and around the world: Sakhalin-1; Sakhalin-2; Varandey; Prirazlomnoye; Novy Port; Yamal LNG, and Tangguh (Indonesia). The Company is headquartered in St. Petersburg, with offices in Moscow, Novorossiysk, Murmansk, Vladivostok, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, London, Limassol, and Dubai.




2020 July 14

18:11 Wärtsilä contracted to deliver a scope of integrated solutions for CDWE's MIV
17:57 More States need to act on crew changes, says IMO Secretary-General
17:33 Throughput of Russian seaports in 6M’2020 climbed by 0.1% (detalization)
17:11 Alewijnse completes electrical installation TSHD Anchorage
16:46 Vladimir Putin signs the package of federal laws on the system of privileges in the Arctic
16:21 Mark Sickles named Interim CEO & Executive Director of DCA
15:55 Reconstruction of hydraulic facility No 9 of Tushinsky District’s HES obtains state expert approval
15:32 Green Yard Group takes over Kleven Verft business
15:04 Engineering and geological survey began for construction of Port Dalny terminal in Khabarovsk Territory
14:39 LISCR hires former USCG LNG expert to boost its global team
14:20 Young Russian sturgeon released to Volga as compensatory measure for dredging on Volga Caspian Canal
13:57 Rosmorport releases young keta salmon as compensatory measure for dredging in Shakhtersk
13:36 Straatman BV built solar-powered mooring systems for Port of Hamburg
13:12 ABB to power the world’s largest diamond recovery vessel for De Beers
12:48 Bunker prices are stable at the Far East ports of Russia (graph)
12:23 COMSAT bolsters Inmarsat network with increased C-band and L-band capabilities
11:55 IMO's informal discussions focus on cutting shipping’s carbon intensity
11:31 G3 Terminal Vancouver opens on Canada’s West Coast and transforms Canada’s grain supply chain
11:13 Further progress towards greener and safer ship recycling in Bangladesh reported at SENSREC meeting
10:50 Polish Ministry of Climate signs letter of intent on cooperation in the development of offshore wind energy
10:32 USCG investigates uninspected passenger vessel allision
10:07 Gdynia to be the installation port of Polish wind farms on the Baltic Sea
09:42 More information needed on the impacts of emissions trading in maritime transport
09:26 Oil prices decrease amid demand concerns
09:21 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, July 14
09:08 Baltic Dry Index as of July 13

2020 July 13

18:24 Canada joins Global Ocean Alliance
18:00 Interim report and independent audit of KS1437 Multipass Port project approved by related authority
16:59 Port of Ventspils (Latvia) handled 6.8 million tonnes of cargo in 6M’2020
15:32 Oboronlogistics ensures Northern delivery
15:04 Ørsted and Van Oord have successfully installed all array cables of the Borssele I & II offshore wind farm
14:21 Dublin Port throughput declines by 10.9% in the six months to June
13:53 FSUE Rosmorport’s revenue in HI’2020 grew by 6% YoY
13:30 Average wholesale prices for М-100 HFO grew to RUB 10,425 in RF spot market
13:04 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from Asia to the Mediterranean
12:41 CMA CGM announces FAK rates from Asia to North Europe
12:19 Tallinks’s vessel Romantika to offer two direct sailings from Riga to Helsinki this July and August
12:18 ISO releases environmental report assurance standard
11:55 NOVATEK reports preliminary operating data for the second quarter and first half 2020
11:32 KN increases the volume of biofuel handling
11:02 XELLZ acquires additional 100.000sqm to develop a Free Zone at Rosslare Europort
10:14 Gibdock completes an extensive two-vessel drydocking and maintenance project for returning customer Shearwater GeoServices
10:13 Port of Helsinki throughput in 6M’2019 fell by 9.2% to 6.6 million tonnes
09:58 The Fjords takes delivery of second all-electric passenger ship
09:49 Oil prices continue going down
09:32 RF Government to allocate RUB 320 million as support of shipping companies
09:10 Baltic Dry Index as of July 10
09:05 MABUX: Bunker market this morning, July 13

2020 July 12

16:21 Carnival Corp announces change in leadership team
15:38 UMS Skeldar gets contract to supply mine countermeasures drones system
15:23 Samson introduces the latest in mooring line innovation
14:19 Coast Guard halts 2 illegal charters near Star Island
13:41 Carnival Corporation's AIDA Cruises to restart sailing vacations in August
13:18 New OCIMF Committee structure
12:51 American P&I Club and ABS Consulting join forces to drive cyber awareness for maritime insurance
11:49 Royal Caribbean Group acquires remaining interest in Silversea

2020 July 11

15:28 Cox Powertrain celebrates as first 300hp diesel outboards roll off the production line ready for delivery
14:51 WCI names Tracy R. Zea as President & CEO
13:45 NOS expands its fleet with two additional M-Class vessels
11:37 Huisman to deliver 250mt Knuckle Boom Crane and 500mt Towing Winch for Nanhai Rescue Bureau