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September 14 2013

Oblique icebreaker gives better access to Arctic waters


Icebreakers trawl the world's frozen seas, cutting a path for other ships in the harsh Arctic winter. Now, a new kind of ship that can drift sideways could make traffic - and trade - easier. Could the maritime technology change life in the extreme north?

Traditional icebreakers use their weight, size and power to bulldoze crusts of ice as much as 3m (10ft) thick when the sea freezes over.

In its wake, this special class of ship leaves a narrow, open lane along which other vessels can follow.

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