Home » Budget Industry » Guided-Missile Destroyer USS Zumwalt Arrives in San Diego

Guided-Missile Destroyer USS Zumwalt Arrives in San Diego

USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000), steams through San Diego Bay on Dec. 8, 2016. US Navy Photo

USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000), steams through San Diego Bay on Dec. 8, 2016. US Navy Photo

After a three-month journey from Maine, USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) is now pierside at its homeport in San Diego, Navy officials told USNI News on Thursday.

The first in a class of three guided missile destroyers arrived at Naval Station San Diego shortly after noon local time on Thursday.

“We have looked forward to pulling in to San Diego for a long time,” Zumwalt commanding officer Capt. James Kirk said in a Navy statement.
“I can’t express enough how proud I am of the crew’s hard work in bringing Zumwalt to the West Coast.”

The ship suffered several engineering casualties related to its next-generation electric propulsion system, which delayed the arrival of the ship to its first homeport. In September, the ship was sidelined at Naval Station Norfolk, Va., for several days following a propulsion causality. Unspecified propulsion problems then kept the ship longer than expected at Naval Station Mayport, Fla. Last month the ship lost propulsion during a transit through the Panama Canal and had to spend several days pierside undergoing repairs.

The root of the Norfolk and Panama casualties center around bearings linked to the driveshafts from the ship’s Advanced Induction Motors that have been contaminated by seawater leaking from failed lube oil chillers. The massive induction motors are driven by the ship’s gas turbine generators and in turn drive the ship’s shafts and power Zumwalt’s weapons and sensors; the motors are the heart of the unique power system found in the ship class.

The service is still investigating why the lube oil chillers leaked seawater into the system in the first place.

Now that the ship is in San Diego it will begin a combat systems activation period that will last for several months before it joins the fleet as a fully operational ship sometime in 2018.
Zumwalt is the first of three in the $22-billion class. Michael Monsoor (DDG-1001) and Lyndon B. Johnson are currently under construction at Bath Iron Works in Maine.

  • tpharwell

    There is a common thread, it seems, to the engineering casualties that have plagued new surface vessels recently. It is saltwater intrusion in to oil circulation systems.

    • RobM1981

      I’ve seen the same thing. Don’t know if it’s a coincidence or not, but I seem to recall that the LCS’ primary issues are largely the same.

  • Scott

    There definitely is a common thread here with the engineering casualties. The more I see, the more I wonder if it’s bad manufacturing or industrial sabotage. I know that’s sort of an odd statement, but we should start questioning it if this continues.

  • OldSalt

    I’ve observed similar failures in medium voltage (2300vac / 4160vac) systems in the private sector.
    Induced currents in surrounding equipment/structures causing bearing and seal failures, I would imagine lube oil coolers using sea (salt) water could suffer from etching of the heat exchanger internal surface do to induced electrical currents, eventually leading to a leak from one side to the other.

    Just another 2 cents from an old salt

  • Centaurus

    I just want to blow up the Chinese

    • Admiral Rusty Schackleford

      Many of them want to blow us up. I hope you guys dont get what you want.

      • Centaurus

        I’ll settle for shoving a 12-gague pump shotgun up all the Chinee-poopey and emptying it out. Let’s see… 7 x 1,000,000,000 = lots of red-sauce.

        • Admiral Rusty Schackleford

          Thats the dumbest thing Ive read in a while. Theres 1.357 billion Chinese btw.

          • Centaurus

            You’re right ! But would still cause buckets of Chinese goo to cause eggs to be fertilized.

          • Admiral Rusty Schackleford


          • old guy

            The Chinese are having their own problems. My friend, who has a structures company, helped design their auto plant. He lived there for a year. He says that he was treated like an insider the whole time and he got the sense that the very capitalistic provinces have a lot of cocktail party talk about distancing themselves from the Federal central government, Except for international matters. Too bad I’m 90, could be a fascinating decade

          • Admiral Rusty Schackleford

            I dont think you will be missing anything good.

          • old guy

            Just stay “young at heart!”

  • Donald Carey

    As an aside, I don’t know what looks more ridiculous – the ship or the blue “cammo” the sailors are wearing.

  • johnhender

    I wonder if we need to have a tugboat follow this one around like the Russians. I love the USN but quite frankly i am disappointed that this could even happen to the best navy in the world. Some Heads need to roll over this. How can a ship that has broken down this much even leave the builder. Someone had to sign off on this i am glad it isn’t me But unfortunately all of us have to pay the price for this unreliable ship .

    • Sam

      Your disappointment (an emotional response) is evident in the assertion that “Heads need to roll over this”. And you do not really know what “this” is. The ship never “broke down”, the Navy made a rational decision to make repairs to systems that had redundancies built into them. The decision to do that was prudent, but not necessary; the ship could have continued to transit with the failed coolers isolated. One of the things that make our Navy great is its ability to weigh risk and reward… Sam Lagrone reported erroneously that the ship arrived late… it did not, in fact, arrive late. The ship arrived on the date it was scheduled to arrive on (a schedule that was initially written months before the ship sailed from BIW.)
      Do “heads roll” when the press get the facts wrong? Should those heads roll?

  • old guy

    Painted white so it can surrender easier.

  • Laura Mullen

    How about the navy trade this ship for the Iowa up in LA. They can run a fully equipped Iowa class of a day for the cost of one projectile for the Zumwalt guns. Take the $16B and upgrade two or 3 of the BB Iowa class, manufacture new powder for them. Oh yeah, the navy went through each of them destroying everything in sight, and even welding turrets so they could never be reactivated. Great thinking navy brass win again.
    The whole pentagon design, planning, acquisition, and testing organizations need to be drained from that swamp. They spend $121 Billion A YEAR in overhead according to an article in the WaPo last week. When they found out how bad the number was, did they decide to fix it? No, instead they buried the report and classified all of the underlying data.