New Antarctic icebreaker RSV Nuyina will shortly be ready for sea trials, with progress on the internal fit-out and systems testing of the ship almost complete, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. The ship was moved in August from Damen’s Romanian shipyard to its current location in Vlissingen in the Netherlands, to enable equipment manufacturers to check and test the installation of its complex systems. After a month long journey of nearly 7000 kilometres, RSV Nuyina arrived in the Netherlands in late August for the final stages of its testing and commissioning. The ship will be ready for sea trials in a few weeks, followed by sea ice trials in the Arctic in late January. RSV Nuyina is expected to arrive in Hobart mid-2021. For this season the Australian Antarctic Division has chartered MPV Everest to undertake station resupply and expedition transport.
Replacing the Aurora Australis, the RSV Nuyina will be faster, larger, stronger and offer increased endurance. The vessel will supply Antarctic research stations with cargo, equipment and personnel, and as a research ship, she will also have extensive laboratory facilities on board.
The 160-meter long, 24,000-ton vessel is expected to accommodate 34 crew and up to 116 scientific personnel, and has the ability to embark up to four helicopters, two landing craft and a dedicated science tender.