Despite being 40% larger than an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the Zumwalt-class DDG appears as a mere fishing boat on enemy radars. In addition to having a minor radar signature, the Zumwalt-class DDG has the sound levels of a Los Angeles-class submarine. The distinct tumblehome hull-a design not seen since the 1905 Russo-Japanese War- reduces radar return. The composite material deckhouse also emits a low radar return. The Zumwalt-class DDG’s angular build makes it fifty times stealthier than a conventional destroyer.
Work on the Zumwalt-class destroyer program is split among industry teams. General Dynamics Bath Iron Works (BIW) is responsible for design, construction, integration, testing and delivery of the DDG-1000 class, and DDG-1002 steel deckhouse, hangar and aft Peripheral Vertical Launch System (PVLS). Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) is responsible for the fabrication of the composite deckhouse, helo hangar and aft PVLS for DDG-1000 and DDG-1001. Raytheon is responsible for software development and integration with BAE providing the AGS and LRLAP.
The first Zumwalt-class destroyer-DDG-1000-entered the water on October 28, 2013 at Bath Iron Works off the Maine coast. The lead ship is named after Admiral Elmo Zumwalt, the youngest man to serve as Chief of Naval Operations. Raytheon’s Ship Integration and Test Team continues to work dockside, integrating their system and performing testing. So far, the Raytheon team has completed more than 1.3 million lines of code for SPY-3/Dual Band Radar for DDG-1000 and DDG-1001.
Named after Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael Monsoor (a Navy SEAL who posthumously received the Medal of Honor for selflessly falling on an Iraqi grenade in 2006), PCU Michael Monsoor(DDG-1001) is due to be delivered in 2015 after being under construction since 2009.
DDG-1002 was named after former President Lyndon B. Johnson, honoring the Naval tradition naming vessels after former Presidents. Construction started on PCU Lyndon B. Johnson in 2012.
The following are the Zumwalt-class ships waiting to be deployed:
- PCU Zumwalt (DDG 1000), Under construction
- PCU Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), Under construction
- PCU Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002), Under construction
The specifications of Zumwalt-class ships are as follows:
| Primary Function
|| DDG 1000|
|| General Dynamics Bath Iron Works|
|| 610 ft|
|| 80.7 ft|
|| 15,656 long tons|
|| 30 kts|
|| 158 |
|| (2) MH60R or (1) MH60R and (3) VTUAVs|