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Flight across the planned research icebreaker AURORA BOREALIS
AURORA BOREALIS is designed as a combination of a heavy icebreaker, a deep-sea drilling ship and a multi-purpose research vessel. The operational portfolio comprises the Polar Regions during all seasons of the year as well as the open oceans. To date, no comparable vessel for year-round polar expeditions is available worldwide, neither in commercial shipping and the offshore industry, nor for scientific operations. The naval architects and engineers thus succeeded in developing the world‘s most advanced icebreaker with the ability to perform scientific deep-sea drilling even within closed sea-ice cover.
Atrium moon pool
Around the Atrium moon pool of 7 m x 7 m in size there are laboratories and fully equipped storage positions for 32 mobile laboratory containers. A transparent dome on top has a special prismatic light deflection designed to supply energy saving lamination with daylight atmosphere. To load or unload containers and other scientific equipment into the Atrium the dome can be shifted by crane. The accessibility to the moon pool from various levels supports the research work on each deck.
The Atrium moon pools gives the opportunity not only to safely deploy gear of considerable size into the water but also to insert also Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV) and other most sensitive instruments. Within the air conditioned Atrium there is ideal working conditions with ice-free access to the Polar Oceans.
The most unique feature of AURORA BOREALIS is the deep-sea drilling rig, which will enable sampling of the ocean floor and sub-sea up to 5000 m water and 1000 m penetration at the most inhospitable places on earth. The drilling capability will on the long run be deployed in both Polar Regions and AURORA BOREALIS will be the only vessel worldwide that could undertake this type of scientific investigation.
Drilling rig: Riserless drilling, 85 m height above keel.
Open water tests
Open water tests in summer 2008 in the Hamburg Ship Model Basin (HSVA), Germany.
Ice Model Tests
Extensive model tests in the ice tanks of the Hamburg Ship Model Basin (HSVA) and Aker Arctic Helsinki have proven that AURORA BOREALIS is able to dynamically position in ice cover with thickness of two metres and more.