The U.S. Navy on Saturday christened its newest warship, the future USS Zumwalt (DDG1000), during a ceremony at Bath Iron Works shipyard in Bath, Maine where it has been under construction since 2009.
The ship is the first of three in the Navy’s new Zumwalt destroyer class, a technologically-advanced stealth warship designed for littoral operations and land attack.
The future USS Zumwalt is the largest ship ever constructed at Bath Iron Works and the Navy’s largest destroyer.
The Navy has incorporated a number of new technologies into the ship’s unique hull design, known as a “tumblehome” hull, and the ship includes an all-electric integrated power system and an Advanced Gun System.
The shape of the composite deckhouse and arrangement of antennas is said to significantly reduce the ship’s radar cross section, making the ship less visible to enemy radar at sea. The design also allows for reduced manning with a standard crew size of 130 and an aviation detachment of 28 Sailors, thereby decreasing lifecycle operations and support costs.
The lead ship and class are named in honor of former Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Elmo R. “Bud” Zumwalt Jr., who served as chief of naval operations from 1970-1974.
The christening ceremony was attended by Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV) Ray Mabus, among other honored guests, and was christened by Admiral Zumwalt’s daughters, Ann Zumwalt and Mouzetta Zumwalt-Weathers.
The ship was originally supposed to be christened in October 2013, but was delayed due to the government shutdown.
Bath Iron Works will deliver the ship to the U.S. Navy later this year and she is expected to reach initial operating capability in 2016.