New Russian icebreaker ‘Arctic’ 22220 was docked at St Petersburg shipyard on Thursday for further nuclear fuel loading.
The process of storing nuclear fuel could take place as early as May.
Once in service later this year, Artika will be the largest and most powerful icebreaker ever constructed.
Two ships of the same class – Sibir and Ural – will follow suit in 2020 and 2021.
All icebreakers will be capable of ensuring year-round navigability of the Northern Sea Route.