Huntington Ingalls Industries delivered the 900-ton deckhouse for the USS ZUMWALT (DDG 1000) to the U.S. Navy Oct. 9.
Fabricated at the company’s composite facility in Gulfport, Mississippi, the structure will be shipped via sea to the Bath, Maine, where General Dynamics is building the 600-foot-long ship’s hull at Bath Iron Works.
The unique structure houses the ship’s bridge, radars, antennas and intake and exhaust systems and, integrated with the hull’s stealthy design, is designed to provide a significantly smaller radar cross-section than existing ships.
“This is one of the largest carbon composite structures ever built,” Steve Sloan, HII’s DDG 1000 program manager, said in a press release. “We are delivering a fine product with the utmost quality.”
The deckhouse and the ship’s hangar were made using cored composite construction processes. According to HII, the properties of carbon fiber materials and balsa wood cores form a composite structure as strong as steel but lightweight, requiring little maintenance.
The ZUMWALT is the first of three DDG 1000-class destroyers. The ship is scheduled to be launched into the water next summer.