Physical ice management is a critical element of station keeping operations in waters characterized by drifting sea ice: it minimizes ice related downtime. Ice management represents also an important cost driver for Arctic offshore developments. The ice management fleet needs to be assembled considering the particular site, season of interest and corresponding expected environmental conditions, the particular facility capabilities to operate in ice covered waters, and the desired operability of the entire system.

The paper describes the physical ice management trials performed during the Offshore Newfoundland Research Expedition in April 2015. These trials were planned and executed with the purpose to generate data to support the development of numerical models for simulating key aspects of the ice management operation.

The results of this paper are applicable to ice management fleet design. Particular focus is on Arctic and sub-Arctic areas characterized predominantly by open water, but still containing the risk of sea ice invasions, and vessels expected to operate in such areas.

Results from the field trials are presented and discussed. The paper elaborates on the schemes for numerical modeling of ice management, the challenges, and how field trial data can support the development of effective simulation tools.

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