The [Naval] Force Awakens

Tell me this new Zumwalt class destroyer doesn’t look like something from the Star Wars movies. It’s brand new, had sea trials off it’s birthplace of Bath Iron Works, Maine a few weeks ago – and that timing seems to align perfectly with the Star Wars “The Force Awakens” release – can it be coincidence?

Read here about these amazing new destroyers: (From YouTube page) The new destroyers are multi-role ships for the US Navy. These stealthy guided missile destroyers can perform anti-aircraft and naval fire support, however the main focus is on land attack. The lead ship of the class is named in honor of Admiral Elmo R. Zumwalt Jr. It was launched in 2013. It is planned to be delivered to the US Navy in 2014. The ship will be tested and trialed until 2016. Originally 32 ships of the class were planned. However only three ships will be built due to high unit price.

The Zumwalt is the largest destroyer ever built. This vessel sports cutting-edge technology and is stealthy to radars. Also this warship has new propulsion and powerful armament.
The USS Zumwalt has unusual hull design optimized for wave piercing. There is a composite deckhouse. Angular shape minimizes its radar signature. The ship has hidden radar and sensors. The despite its size the USS Zumwalt has a radar signature of a fishing boat. Also it has reduced sound and infrared signature what makes this ship harder to detect.

These warships will be fitted with 80 advanced modular vertical launch cells for various missiles. The Zumwalt can carry a mix of various missiles, including Tomahawk land attack cruise missiles (1 per cell), ASROC anti-submarine rockets (1 per cell), RIM-162 Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles (ESSM) (4 per cell) and Standard surface-to-air missiles. Also there are two 155-mm naval guns with 920 rounds of ammunition and two 57-mm guns.
This stealthy destroyer has the highest level of automation of any US Navy surface warship. It will be operated by less sailors than comparable ships. The USS Zumwalt will be run by a crew of about 140 sailors. It is half the crew of comparable Arleigh Burke class destroyer. Automated systems will put out fires and combat flooding. Surveillance cameras will monitor what is going outside.

The ship has a flight deck and a hangar for up to two medium-lift helicopters such as SH-60 or MH-60R Seahawks. It can also carry up to three MQ-8 Fire Scout or other small UAVs.

The USS Zumwalt is the first US surface warship to use electric propulsion. Its integrated power system can send electricity to the electric drive motors or weapons. Its powerplant produces enough electricity to power future weapons like the electromagnetic gun or laser. It generates enough power to light up a small city. Sound levels of the Zumwalt are comparable with Los Angeles class submarines.

And because we love BUILDING boats – check out this video about how they built the destroyer right here in the USA at Bath Iron Works!

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