Sovcomflot expands its fleet with advanced seismic vessel


At a festive ceremony in Sochi, on 16 September 2011, a new  seismic exploration vessel called Vyacheslav Tikhonov was named for SCF Group,  and a flag of Russian Federation was raised.

Russian PM Vladimir Putin and other high government and business officials  took part in the ceremony.

The vessel is designed for geophysical  exploration on the continental shelf of the Arctic and sub-Arctic seas,  operating in harsh weather and ice conditions. 

The ship is named after a prominent Soviet and Russian actor Vyacheslav Tikhonov, a recipient of numerous  state awards, including the titles of People’s Artist of the USSR. His  unforgettable roles, especially the most famous acting as a Soviet spy Stirlitz in the TV series “Seventeen Moments of Spring”, are very well known in the country.

During the ceremony a series of agreements were signed, including an agreement with United Shipbuilding Corporation (USC) on further production of these kinds of vessels in Russia.

At the ceremony, Prime-Minister Vladimir Putin said:

"Undoubtedly, Vyacheslav Tikhonov was one of the leaders of Soviet and Russian filmmaking and of our entire culture. Similarly, this vessel will  undoubtedly be a leader in the sector it is meant to develop. This is the best  vessel in this class and in this industry thanks to the latest equipment for  marine geological prospecting and exploration. Certainly, it will be in-demand  both in the Black Sea basin and other regions. We have great prospects in this  field. I am sure that the crew will be worthy of the name Vyacheslav Tikhonov  and will meet the highest requirements and criteria of work. I would like to  wish you success! Today, we are going to take another step forward – a step  towards the localisation of production of such vessels at Russian shipyards. I  am sure that our shipbuilders can do an excellent job of producing such  equipment. I congratulate everyone again and wish you fair seas," - added  Putin.

After the ceremony Vyacheslav Tikhonov started working under contract -  seismic exploration work for the Tuapse Trough Project on behalf of OAO NK Rosneft and ExxonMobil. The operators participated in the tender by OAO Rosneft, for the implementation of marine seismic surveys on the continental shelf in the Black Sea, during 2011-2012.

SCF Group had acquired the ship under a bareboat charter agreement with  Polarcus, one of the world’s leading companies specializing marine seismic exploration.

The high-tech X-bow 3D seismic exploration vessel was built  in August 2011, and is the youngest of six existing vessels of this kind in the  world. The vessel has modern equipment and several unique technical features.  The hull, the bow and the stern of the vessel have a special form and the ship  has eight seismometer cable assemblies, she also has optimised parameters for  her diesel-electric propulsion system. These are technical solutions designed to  maintain smooth operations at low temperatures, supported by the vessel’s enhanced ice-class and overall high safety standards.

The vessel is included in the Russian Register of Ships, she flies the Russian flag and will be managed by a Russian crew of seafarers and seismic specialists. The technical  management of the ship is run by SCF Novoship, (Novorossiysk), one of the oldest  and most professional tanker companies in the world.

The addition of this  modern ship, to Russia’s seismic survey fleet, will expand the range of services  provided to oil and gas companies operating on the Russian continental shelf. It will also give SCF access to the latest technologies for the technical management of seismic fleet, with a special focus on Arctic operations. The new vessel will reduce the technological gap between Russian  contractors and the leading international seismic survey companies.

This news is another example of how SCF is developing as a strong national offshore player, with extensive expertise and focus on operating in the Arctic and harsh environments.

Sovcomflot President & CEO Sergey Frank  said:

“Strengthening our fleet with the addition of this seismic vessel  is fully in line with SCF’s strategy targeted towards providing specialised  shipping services for Russia’s continental shelf. It is an important step  towards developing a closer partnership between SCF and the consortium of  Rosneft and ExxonMobil in the marine seismic segment. The Russian fleet and  domestic marine geology will gain access to the latest technologies for data  collection, and this undoubtedly will contribute to cutting the technological  gap between Russian subcontractors and the world’s leading seismic survey  companies. It promotes import substitution of services, whilst upgrading  Russia’s ageing seismic fleet and equipment”.

Vessel  dimensions:

Deadweight – 4,771 tonnes
Length overall – 84.2  metres
Breadth (moulded) – 17 metres
Crew – 22
Ice class –  1A
Streamers - 8 

SCF Press Office 

SCF Group  (Sovcomflot) - one of the world's leading shipping companies, specializing  in petroleum products and liquefied gas transportation. The fleet includes 156  vessels with a total deadweight of 11.8 million tonnes. The company is  registered in St. Petersburg with offices in Moscow, Novorossiysk, Murmansk,  Vladivostok, London, Limassol, Madrid and Singapore.

The Group offers a  wide range of vessels and a powerful grouping of vessels, in the market segments  most demanded by major Russian oil and gas companies. With its own technical  development and unique approach to advanced technologies, Sovcomflot has the  ability to meet the most demanding customer requirements, providing effective  transportation for oil & gas companies.  

ExxonMobil - brings to Russia the world experience of  hydrocarbons exploration and a wide range of financial, engineering, technical,  managerial and environmental knowledge. Affiliate companies of “ExxonMobil” are  working in Russia since the end of 80-s. ExxonMobil is the operator of  Sakhalin-1 oil & gas project, participates in Caspian pipeline consortium,  sells fuels and lubricants, oil-chemical products under brands “Mobil” and  “Esso” and is also occupied with the licenses for oil refining and petrochemical  technologies.  

Rosneft -
the leader of Russia’s petroleum industry, and ranks  among the world’s top publicly traded oil and gas companies. The Company is  primarily engaged in exploration and production of hydrocarbons, the production  of petroleum products and petrochemicals, and marketing of their outputs.  Rosneft has been included in the Russian Government’s List of Strategic  Enterprises and Organizations. The state holds 75.16% in the Company (through  OJSC ROSNEFTEGAZ), while approximately 15% of shares are in free-float (see  shareholder structure). 

OAO United Shipbuilding Corporation – established by order No.  394 of the President of the Russian Federation dated 21 March 2007. One hundred  percent of shares belong to the State. USC includes 9 design bureaus and 39  shipbuilding and ship repair yards. Largest shipbuilding equities: OAO PSZ  Yantar (Kaliningrad), OAO Admiralteyskie Verfi (St. Petersburg), OAO PO Sevmash  (Severodvinsk), OAO DVZ Zvezda (Vladivostok). Largest international projects:  construction of the shipyard Zvezda-DSME, JV with Daewoo Shipbuilding &  Marine Engineering (South Korea), construction of the shipyard Vostok-Ruffles,  JV with Yantai Ruffles (Singapore). Total earnings in 2010 amounted to Rub 135  billion rubles. Currently USC consolidates round 70% of the domestic  shipbuilding industry. The State corporation’s main priority is the Russian  market, USC also exports its production to 20 countries.