Launch of nuclear icebreaker, 1957

Launch of nuclear icebreaker, 1957

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Credit: SPUTNIK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Launch of a nuclear icebreaker. The Lenin nuclear icebreaker launching from Leningrad (now St. Petersburg), Russia, on December 8th 1957. Icebreakers have reinforced hulls and are used to break through sea ice and open up passageways for other ships. The NS Lenin was the world's first nuclear-powered surface vessel. It initially had three OK-150 nuclear reactors. After a series of accidents, these were replaced in 1970 by OK-900 nuclear reactors. The ship was decommissioned in 1989 and laid up at Murmansk. Following repairs, it was converted into a museum ship in 2005.

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