The 15,000-ton, 610-foot long ZUMWALT (DDG 1000) is the biggest destroyer ever built — larger, even, than most cruisers. Construction of the ship is about 80 percent complete in Bath, Maine, at the Bath Iron Works shipyard of General Dynamics.
Friday night, Dec. 14, shipyard workers carried out a remarkable evolution, lifting the 1,000-ton deckhouse 95 feet into the air, then sliding the ZUMWALT’s hull into position below the structure. Four cranes then lowered the deckhouse onto the hull, sealed the deal, then rolled the hull back into its building position.
Ships are being built in ever-growing blocks or modules, and the shipyard proudly pointed out this was the largest static lift ever accomplished at Bath, more than two times heavier than the previous record.
The ZUMWALT will be launched later next year, with initial delivery scheduled for 2014.
Two other ships, the MICHAEL MONSOOR (DDG 1001), and LYNDON B. JOHNSON (DDG 1002), also are under construction at Bath, with delivery planned, respectively, for 2016 and 2018.
All photos courtesy General Dynamics Bath Iron Works.