Modernisation of navigation aids completed on Yenisei River section of Northern Sea Route  

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The work of modernising the navigation aids on the Yenisei River, which is one of the busiest sections of the Northern Sea Route in the Arctic waters, has been completed by Hydrographic Enterprises, a subsidiary of the Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom.  

The Yenisei is the fifth-longest river system in the world, and the largest to drain into the Arctic Ocean. 

Rosatom operates nuclear powered icebreakers that help keep the Northern Sea Route (NSR) open for navigation through the year. In addition, Rosatom is equipping the NSR facilities, building port infrastructure, and developing transit. 

A Rosatom statement earlier this week said that as part of the modernisation work, 18 landmark beacons and 40 floating beacons, or buoys, have been equipped with new software and hardware systems on the Yenisei River section of the NSR from Cape Sopochnaya Karga to the Dudinka seaport.  

“The new equipment enables remote monitoring of the operation of the navigation aids: geolocation and battery charge level, displacement coordinates, deformation, and slope. This allows quickly identifying and eliminating malfunctions in the operation of navigation aids”, the statement said.  

According to Rosatom, buoys with new equipment are operated during summer and autumn navigation, while landmark beacons are used all year round.  

The collected information is communicated from buoy to buoy via radio channel, then summarized on the landmark beacons, and finally transmitted via satellite to the office of Hydrographic Enterprise in St. Petersburg, the statement added.  

Besides the nuclear-powered icebreakers currently being constructed under Rosatom’s Project 22220 (two such ships have already been commissioned), work is also underway on the company’s 10510 Leader project to build a series of nuclear icebreakers during the current decade, which would supersede the Project 22220 output as the largest and most powerful icebreakers in the world. 

The Northern Sea Route via the Arctic is the shortest route between the East Asian and Western European ports. Russia’s Far East and Arctic regions have a great export potential due to the proximity of such countries as China, India, Vietnam, Bangladesh and Myanmar, among others.