The Russian ice-breaking LNG carrier Christophe de Margerie completed its first commercial voyage, transporting LNG from Norway to South Korea via the Northern Sea route (NSR). The vessel set a new time record for crossing the NSR of 6.5 days. It became the world's first mechant vessel to travel the full length of the NSR without an ice-breaker escort vessel, according to the owner, Sovcomflot, adding it is the world's first and only ice-breaking LNG.
The vessel traveled 4,060 km from Cape Zhelaniya of the Novaya Zemlya archipelago to Cape Dezhnev at Chutkotka, Russia's easternmost contintental point.
The trip from Hammerfest in Norway to the port of Boryeong in South Korea was about 30% faster that the regular southern route through the Suez Canal.
The vessel is capable of sailing independently through ice up to 2.1 m thick. It was built to order for Sovcomflot to serve the Yamal LNG project and transport LNG year-round through the Kara Sea and Gulf of Ob.