A lone barrel of Alaskan oil at Prudhoe Bay, is waiting the arrival of the SS MANHATTAN today.
USS Manhattan travelling through ice near centre of Northwest Passage.
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Background: A lone barrel of Alaskan oil at Prudhoe Bay, is waiting the arrival of the SS MANHATTAN today. This will be a symbol of success in conquering the ice of the Northwest Passage.
The 1000-foot-long oil tanker was sent on this mission to establish the practicality of shipping oil from the newly discovered oilfields in Alaska to the refineries on the East Coast of the United States. Today, it will culminate the journey.
After taking on the symbolic barrel of crude, the MANHATTAN will steam to Point Barrow, scheduled to arrive on Sunday (September 21). From there, it will head for the Bering Sea for more ice- breaking practice in the ice packs there.
During her voyage, the MANHATTAN was photographed by a U.S. Navy NC 121-K aircraft which was taking part in "Project Birdseye", a program of aerial surveillance of the arctic ice pack. At this point, the commercially-owned ice-breaking tanker was slicing her way through the eight-foot-thick ice south of Byam Martin Island near the centre of the Northwest Passage.
Accompanying the SS MANHATTAN on her long journey through the ice and cold are two smaller ships, the U.S. Coast Guard's USCG NORTHWIND and Canada's HMCS McDONALD, which assisted the huge tanker throughout her voyage.