Vard Marine Inc and ILS Oy recently announced an agreement to work together to develop design solutions for the global icebreaker market and to address the challenges of ice-capable shipping worldwide. The two companies are world-leaders in this highly specialized field, with an extensive combined design portfolio and an impressive client base. Together, they are uniquely positioned to help shipbuilders, ship owners and operators in developing fit-for-purpose and sustainable vessel designs for both public and private sectors projects. One area of cooperation will be the further development and implementation of ILS’ patented Detachable IceBreaking Bow in new markets. The ILS DIBB, with its independent power plant allows icebreaking to become a modular capability that can be added to new and existing ships as and when required, rather than being built into the vessel with all the size, weight, cost and efficiency impacts that this implies. While detachable bows are not a new concept, the DIBB’s unique capabilities overcome many of the drawbacks of earlier approaches. While the agreement is new, both companies have long respected each other’s corporate cultures and achievements. Most recently Vard Marine has developed the conversion designs for the Canadian Coast Guard’s Medium Icebreakers (MIBs) from an original ILS hull design. These ships are now some of the Coast Guard’s most powerful and effective assets.