Robert Allan Ltd. has secured contracts for two new designs of icebreaking OSVs for use in the North Caspian Sea.
The contract was awarded to the Vancouver naval architects by the Turkish-based Palmali Group of Companies, and the vessels will be built by Besiktas Shipyard of Altinova, Turkey. Upon delivery the vessels will be chartered to the Lukoil Oil Company of Astrakhan, Russia. Three vessels in total are to be built and delivered by the end of 2014.
Each of the new vessel designs will be 80 metres in length and specifically designed for operation in the very shallow, ice covered waters encountered in the Caspian. The vessels will meet the rules of the Russian Maritime Register of Shipping. The first design, designated as a TundRA 8000 OSV, is for a traditional OSV, satisfying RMRS ARC 4 Ice Class requirements. Two TundRA 8000 OSVs have been ordered. The second design, designated as a TundRA 8000 MSRV, will be a multifunctional standby/rescue variant of the OSV design capable of meeting RMRS ARC 5 requirements. Vessels of these Ice Classes are designed to be capable of breaking ice of 0.9 and 1.2 meters respectively. One TundRA 8000 MSRV has been ordered.
Lukoil currently operates four (4) similar but smaller OSVs designed by Robert Allan Ltd. and completed between 2007- 2009. Robert Allan Ltd. has been designing Ice Class and icebreaking vessels since the late 1960’s, and the experience gained in designing vessels to operate in the shallow waters of the Canada’s Beaufort Sea have been put to good use in the similar environment of Russia’s Caspian Sea.