Biggest pieces of ZUMWALT (DDG 1000) come together in the night (updated w/timelapse video)

Four cranes -- two of the shipyard's 300-ton capacity units and two additional 400-ton cranes from Reed & Reed, a nearby construction company -- lifting the deckhouse about 95 feet off the floor of the Land Level Transfer Facility.

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.

Looking forward from the ZUMWALT's starboard side as the hull is slowly slid under the hanging superstructure.

Closeup view from the previous image, showing the back of the superstructure over the ship's forward-sloping bow.

The ZUMWALT's hull is rolled forward into place under the superstructure.

Closeup view of the ZUMWALT's tumblehome hull, designed to slice through waves rather than rise above them.

The hull rolls forward under the superstructure. The grey structure at left is the ship's hangar, also built by Huntington Ingalls. At far right, the destroyer's bow is entering the yard's custom-built floating drydock, which will be used in 2013 to launch the ship.

Closeup of the superstructure suspended over the hull. Bad weather since the lift has prevented better photography, but more images are expected soon of the superstructure in place.



Christopher P. Cavas
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Christopher P. Cavas

If it's on, over, under or around the water, I write about it. Ships and aircraft, units, tactics, leadership, strategies, acquisition, politics, industry. In the USA and around the world.
Christopher P. Cavas
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