On November 22, 2022, an official ceremony of raising the state flag of the Russian Federation on the second serial universal nuclear-powered icebreaker Ural took place in St. Petersburg. This is the third nuclear icebreaker of project 22220 to join Atomflot's nuclear icebreaking fleet. Today, there are, in all, seven nuclear icebreakers.
On October 31, 2022, factory sea trials of the nuclear icebreaker were completed in the waters of the Gulf of Finland. During the trials, the trial crew confirmed the speed performance of the icebreaker, its maneuverability characteristics, examined the operation of the icebreaker's mechanisms and equipment, automation, communication, and navigation systems, tested the steam turbine unit, the ship's electric propulsion systems, the work of shaft lines and deck machinery (anchor and steering gear). Due to its unique dual draft design, the vessel will be able to operate effectively in open sea areas and in the mouths of Arctic rivers.
The second serial universal nuclear icebreaker Ural will begin to provide the icebreaking support of cargo service along the Northern Sea Route in December 2022. On the same day, November 22, 2022, an official ceremony of launching the third serial universal nuclear icebreaker Yakutia, under construction by Baltic Shipyard JSC, took place. Under the contract, the third serial universal nuclear icebreaker (UNIB) Yakutia is supposed to be delivered in December 2024.
Currently, the lead UNIB Arktika commissioned in 2020 and the first serial UNIB Sibir commissioned in 2022 are operating in the waters of the NSR. During their operation, the icebreakers have successfully confirmed all their designed technical characteristics. The RITM-200 reactor plant with an integrated layout of the steam generating unit has demonstrated its efficiency. In 2021-2022, the nuclear-powered vessels worked successfully in shallow depths, thereby confirming their versatility and proving their readiness for operation in open sea areas and in the mouths of Arctic rivers. Rosatom is to conclude a contract for the construction of the fifth and sixth nuclear-powered icebreakers of project 22220 by the end of the year.
Construction of the third and fourth serial universal nuclear icebreakers Yakutia and Chukotka continues at the shipbuilding enterprise. The contract deadline for the delivery of the fourth serial UNIB Chukotka is December 2026. The icebreakers of project 22220 will contribute to unlocking the shipping potential of the Northern Sea Route, including the provision of year-round convoying in the eastern sector of the NSR.