Aker Arctic Technology Inc. continues the work of MARC

The history of Aker Arctic Technology Inc. begins with the now soon 70 years old history of Finnish icebreaker construction. Until the 1970's, icebreakers were developed and built based on experience from previous vessels, combined with full scale experimental tests. When oil company Exxon, in 1969 needed assistance in its Prudhoe Bay development project, aiming at oil transportation services through the North West passage, the first ice model basin was established, in 1969. Beginning with developing the icebreaking hull form for the converted tanker Manhattan tanker, which performed successfully in the ice north of Alaska, the ice model basin continued operation under the name Wärtsilä Ice Model Basin (WIMB), part of Wärtsilä Shipbuilding. In those years, the Helsinki yard continuously built icebreakers, and, with the other yards, also built other icegoing tonnage. See References/ Ships

A specific design and consulting department - Wärtsilä Arctic Design and Marketing (WADAM), was established in the early 1980's, working together with WIMB. In addition to in-house R&D, services included research work and consultancy tasks for outside clients ranging from ice model tests to full-scale field trials with ships and structures including ice data collection expeditions. The name Wärtsil Arctic Research Centre (WARC) was established, in the 1980's. In mid 1980's the Arctic Technology -group took over from WADAM, this shipyard organization also being in charge of marketing of icegoing ships.

The second (in operation until end 2005) laboratory, was inaugurated in 1983. With MARC, the scientific work gained high priority, resulting in several important developments. The MARC FG (fine grain) model ice was developed, and even patented.

As the land lease arrangement for MARC reached its end, a decision to build a new, and bigger, ice model basin was made. An agreement with the city of Helsnki was reached in late 2004 to build the new facilities in the Vuosaari area, east of the centre of Helsinki, next to a new port under construction.

Aker Arctic Technology Inc. moved to the new premises in 2006 and simultaneously expanded its operation by adding to the staff the former project department of the Helsinki shipyard.

See also References.


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