Icebreaker Snow Dragon
Xiangyanghong 10 was China's first Antarctic exploration vessel. Built by China primarily for general oceanic investigation, it was used for only one expedition -- to build the Great Wall Station -- because it was not constructed to sail in Antarctic conditions. It is now called Yuanwang 4 and is used to receive satellite signals.
China purchased its first ice going vessel, Jidi, from Finland. A supply, transport vessel it could navigate a field of floating ice but was not an icebreaker. Jidi was decommissioned after six years in service.
Xuelong, or Snow Dragon (Chinese: 雪龙) is China's first icebreaker and was built in Ukraine in 1993. China spent 31 million yuan (US$3.7 million) to convert it into a transport ship for Antarctic expeditions. It replaced Jidi in 1994 and has remained in service ever since.
Xuelong is the re-supply vessel and the scientific research platform of the Chinese Arctic and Antarctic research expeditions. It is well equipped with all the advanced systems of self-contained navigation and weather observation which is essential in polar voyages and research expeditions.
There are a data processing center, seven laboratories with a total area of 200 square meters and basic operating equipment on board the vessel. It is also provided with three operating boats and a helicopter for transportation and research purposes in the Arctic and Antarctic regions.
The vessel's dimensions are:
cruising radius 12000 NM
speed 17.9 knots