BATH, Maine — The future USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002), the final Zumwalt-class “stealth” destroyer, was launched Sunday at Bath Iron Works.
The launch followed a multiday process that included moving the ship from the land-level facility to the dry dock, which was then slowly flooded until the ship was afloat, according to a release from General Dynamics Bath Iron Works.
With the ship now afloat, final outfitting and production will begin.
Capt. Kevin Smith, DDG 1000 program manager, called the event a “major milestone.”
The DDG 1000, the USS Zumwalt, was accepted by the U.S. Navy in 2016. It remains in its home port in San Diego.
The second, the USS Michael Monsoor, completed acceptance trials in February and the Navy took partial delivery in April. The DDG 1001 returned from trials this summer for replacement of damaged turbine blades, USNI News reported at the time. The Monsoor left BIW last month and arrived in San Diego on Dec. 8, the Times of San Diego reported.
The DDG 1001 also had problems with the electrical system during sea trials in December 2017, when it returned to the Bath shipyard one day after departing. It resumed sea trials after repairs.
The destroyers include state-of-the-art electric propulsion systems, wave-piercing tumblehome hulls, and are equipped with the most advanced warfighting technology and weaponry, Naval Sea Systems Command said in a release.
“The crew of Lyndon B. Johnson looks forward to bringing this great warship honoring our 36th president to life, and we’re proud to have the opportunity to be present for this important step in the ship’s construction,” Capt. Jeremy Gray, prospective commanding officer of the DDG 1002, said in the release. “It is truly impressive to see the ship afloat in the Kennebec River for the first time and we look forward to taking her to sea.”
The ship is scheduled to be christened in the spring.