The future USS Lyndon B. Johnson (DDG 1002), the US Navy’s third Zumwalt-class destroyer, was launched at General Dynamics-Bath Iron Works shipyard on December 9.
The newbuilding was translated from land level to the Kennebec River over the weekend.
“It’s important for the DDG 1000 program and shipyard to reach this major milestone,” Capt. Kevin Smith, DDG 1000 program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships, said.
“With the first two ships of the class underway, we are excited to continue the next phase of construction of the future Lyndon B. Johnson,” Smith added.
The process of launching a ship is a multi-day process that includes moving the ship from the land level facility to the dry dock which is then slowly flooded until the ship is afloat. With the ship in the water, final outfitting and production can commence.
Zumwalt-class destroyers feature an electric propulsion system, wave-piercing tumblehome hull, stealth design and are equipped with the most advanced warfighting technology and weaponry. These ships will be capable of performing a range of deterrence, power projection, sea control, and command and control missions while allowing the US Navy to evolve with new systems and missions.
The future Lyndon B. Johnson is the third and final DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class ship, and is scheduled to be christened in the spring of 2019.
The first two ships of the 1000 class of guided missile destroyers pulled into San Diego harbor last week.
Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), which left Bath Iron Works on November 9, joined Zumwalt (DDG 1000) in their Southern California homeport. The future Michael Monsoor made its way through the Panama Canal for the first time in her history, navigating the 50-mile long waterway on November 28.
Michael Monsoor began construction in 2013 and is scheduled to be commissioned at Naval Base Coronado on January 26, 2019.