Atomic icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy sets speed record for reaching the North Pole
© RIA Novosti. Vera Kostamo

Atomic icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy sets speed record for reaching the North Pole

The atomic icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy has set a new record, making the journey from Murmansk to the North Pole in just 79 hours. This is twice as fast as the journey made by the icebreaker Arktika, which in 1977 became the first surface vessel to reach the North Pole, according to Andrei Smirnov, director of Atomflot Shipping.

The atomic icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy reached the North Pole at 2.33 am Moscow time on August 17, 2017, making the journey to commemorate the Arktika's historic voyage which took place in 1977. The route was covered in record time, 79 hours from departure from Atomflot's dock in Murmansk, Smirnov said.

40 years ago the journey lasted for 176 hours, with the Arktika leaving Murmansk at 8 pm Moscow time on August 9, 1977, and arriving at the North Pole at 4 am Moscow time on August 17.

Smirnov noted that this is the 124th time a surface vessel has reached the North Pole. "Over these 40 years, surface vessels have completed the journey 124 times, with Soviet and Russian ships accounting for 111 of these voyages," he said.

The atomic icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy, under the command of Captain Dmitry Lobusov, marked the 40th anniversary of the first surface journey to the North Pole, repeating the route taken by the pioneering icebreaker Arktika four decades earlier. A conference was organised on board the 50 Let Pobedy, with members of the State Duma and Federation Council, representatives of the Rosatom state corporation and polar explorers from different generations taking part in a series of lectures and discussions. Participants will also take part in a ceremony in the North Pole which will involve planting a Russian flag there.