US Navy’s Stealth Destroyer Departs From San Diego On First Operational Cruise

U.S.S. Zumwalt (DDG-1000), a 16,000-ton next generation guided-missile destroyer, left its San Diego homeport for its first “operational period at sea,” the U.S. Navy said in a March 8 statement.

The Navy said the milestone demonstrates the service's commitment to advancing the lethality of stealth warships through cutting-edge technologies in combat systems, weapons, and engineering plant.

“Zumwalt is designed for stealth,” said Capt. Andrew Carlson, the ship's commanding officer.

“This aids her role as a multi-mission surface combatant and improves the fleet commander’s options for delivery of naval combat power to meet the Navy’s emergent mission requirements.”

The ship was commissioned in October 2016. Following the commissioning, the Zumwalt was stationed in San Diego where advanced weapon systems were installed. According to the statement, the ship’s crew completed a post-delivery maintenance examination of the destroyer’s electronic, powerplant, and weapons systems before the departure.

“My crew has been looking forward to continued testing and operations at sea, leveraging the newly installed capabilities of this platform," said Carlson. "Our primary focus is executing a safe underway, while building both competence and confidence in operating Zumwalt across the spectrum of naval warfare.”

U.S. Indo-Pacific Command snapped an image of the newly-commissioned @ZUMWALT_DDG1000 departing from San Diego late last week.

The Zumwalt is about 100 feet longer and 13 feet wider than the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, is powered by two Rolls-Royce turbine generators capable of producing 78 megawatts (105,000 hp), and also has enough power to fire electrically-powered weapons.

Armed with 80 missiles in vertical launch tubes within the hull and two 155-caliber cannons, the vessel is expected to have directed-energy weapons once the technology matures.

While the Navy provided limited details on the vessels next stop, CTV Vancouver Island said the ship is scheduled to make a port call to Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt on Vancouver Island later this month.

“While the exact date of the ship’s arrival and duration of its stay remain closely guarded secrets of the U.S. Navy, the ship’s oddly angular design, stealth capabilities and state-of-the-art electric drive system are sure to attract the attention of naval watchers and neophytes alike,” read the report.