skip to main content

Chilean Navy to get new icebreaker for Antarctic

The Chilean Navyʼs Almirante Viel , shown here in a rendering, is being built under Project ‘Antártica I' and is based on the VARD 9 203 design from Canadian shipbuilder Vard Marine. (Vard Marine)

A new Antarctic icebreaker ship for the Chilean Navy is to launch on 22 December 2022 by the state-run naval shipbuilder ASMAR at its facility in Talcahuano.

Named Almirante Viel , it will replace an older 6,300 tonne ship of the same name, the Type 1200 ice-capable support ship Almirante Oscar Viel (AP 46) that retired on 11 February 2019.

A spokesperson from the Chilean Navy said this is ASMAR's “most ambitious project” since the creation of the shipyard in 1960. The new Almirante Viel has a length of 111 m and a displacement of about 13,000 tonnes, making it the largest vessel built by ASMAR to date and the first ship of this type built in South America.

Local reports indicate the ship could complete outfitting by July 2023 with port trials scheduled to begin in December 2023 and commissioning in August 2024, giving time to prepare for its first deployment in December–March (austral summer).

Almirante Viel is being built under Project ‘Antártica I' for USD215 million to the VARD 9 203 design from Canadian shipbuilder Vard Marine, a subsidiary of Italian naval shipyard Fincantieri.

The spokesperson said it will provide the Chilean Navy with a vessel dedicated to research science in Antarctica, supplying bases, surveillance of the maritime zone, rescue and salvage operations, and that the ship “will be able to accommodate 30 scientists”.

The new Almirante Viel

Looking to read the full article?

Gain unlimited access to Janes news and more...