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US Navy ‘Super Destroyer’ Broke Down in Panama Due to New Engineering Casualty


The newest USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) guided missile destroyer broke down in the Panama Canal due to a new engineering casualty.

US Navy ‘Super Destroyer’ Broke Down in Panama Due to New Engineering Casualty

USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) guided missile destroyer (Photo: AFP 2016 / US Navy)

On Monday evening, the newest USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) broke down, when it was transiting the Panama Canal, USNI News information website reported, citing US Navy officials.

According to USNI News, “the ship lost propulsion in its port shaft during the transit and the crew saw water intrusion in two of the four bearings that connect to Zumwalt’s port and starboard Advanced Induction Motors (AIMs) to the drive shafts.” The website explained that the AIMs are “massive electrical motors that are driven by the ship’s gas turbines and in turn electrically power the ship’s systems and drive the shafts.”

The destroyer, which was on the way to its home port in San Diego, is now stopped for repairs at the former US Naval Station Rodman, spokesman for the US 3rd Fleet, Cmdr. Ryan Perry, told USNI News. According to Perry, the timeline for repairs is currently being determined.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, another defense official told the website that the “repairs could take up to ten days.”

Before the incident, it was planned that the vessel should arrive in San Diego by the end of the year and start its weapon system activation period before to join the fleet as an operational warship in 2018.

The guided missile destroyer came from the shipyard on September 7, but it has already managed to give problems to repairmen. In September, it became known about a “seawater leak in the propulsion motor drive lube oil auxiliary system for one of the ship’s shafts,” while in October USS Zumwalt encountered technical problems in Florida.

However, breakdowns were not the only problem of the vessel. The LRLAP (Long Range Land-Attack Projectile) 155mm guided precision munitions, developed for guns of the DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class vessels, have turned out to be too expensive. So, one shot from the unique gun costs about $800,000, while the price of the ship itself is $4.4 billion.

As it was reported earlier, the US Navy reduced the numbers of the Zumwalt-class destroyers from 28 ships to three.

USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000) officially joined the US Navy on October 15. The vessel became one of the most expensive ships in the history of the US Navy.



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