Rosatomflot has signed a RUB36.9bn ($1.2bn) contract with Russia-based Baltiysky Zavod to build the new generation nuclear icebreaker.
Rosatomflot had announced a tender in June 2012 for the construction of the 60MW icebreaker, which was won by Baltiysky Zavod, a unit of United Shipbuilding.
Construction of the vessel is scheduled to start by the end of 2012 and is expected to be completed in December 2017.
The vessel will have a length of 173m and width of 34m, which is about 14m long and 4m wider than the current icebreaker.
The new icebreaker, which will have a draught of between 8.5 and 10.5m, will have a displacement of about 70,000t.
Capable of accommodating 75 people, the new vessel can navigate through ice up to 2.8m thick at a speed of between 1.5 and 2 knots.
The three shaft propulsion arrangement on the ship will be powered by two RITM-200 pressurised water reactors, developed by OKBM Afrikantov.
Design of the reactor integrates some main components into the reactor vessel and generates 60MW of power for the motor-driven propeller.
The reactor is expected to operate on fuel improved to less than 20% uranium-235 and require refuelling every seven years over a 40-year lifespan.
Keel laying of the icebreaker is scheduled to be launched in November 2015 and after outfitting of the vessel, sea trials are expected to carried out in August 2017, while ice trials is expected in November 2017.
Upon delivery the icebreaker will be operated in both the Northern Sea Route lines and rivers of the Arctic region, including in the Barents, Pechora and Kara seas, as well as in the shallower waters of the Yenisei River and Ob Bay.
The new nuclear-propelled icebreaker will be equipped with a special ballast system that will help change the ships draught from the maximum to minimum one over a certain period of time and after construction it will replace the nuclear icebreakers, Arktika and Taimyr.