Year-round oil transportation by ships from the north-western Russian Arctic areas requires a transport system that can achieve a regular and reliable transport under difficult ice conditions. The tankers and the assisting icebreakers must be designed for operation under severe Arctic conditions. Factors influencing the design of the vessels are investigated with special attention to

o One icebreaker escorting tanker(s) with wider beam than that of the icebreaker

o Passage through pressurized ice fields

o Passage through ridge fields.

Apart from investigating the physics of the above factors, the paper describes the design of the whole transport system.

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