Navy’s most advanced warship, USS Zumwalt, breaks down in Panama Canal

Posted at 7:39 PM, Nov 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-22 19:55:04-05

The USS Zumwalt had to be towed to port Tuesday due to an engineering problem in the Panama Canal, according to CBS News.

NORFOLK, Va. (Sept. 14, 2016) The guided-missile destroyer Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Zumwalt (DDG 1000) arrives at Naval Station Norfolk for testing and evaluation in preparation for its upcoming commissioning on Oct. 15, 2016. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jamie V. Cosby/Released)

U.S. Third Fleet spokesman Commander Ryan Perry said a vice admiral directed the ship to reamin at ex-Naval Statoin Rodman in Panama to take a look at the issues on Monday. The ship is on its way to its new homeport in San Diego, California.

“The schedule for the ship will remain flexible to enable testing and evaluation in order to ensure the ship’s safe transit to her new home port in San Diego,” Perry said in a statement.

USNI reported that the shipwas in the middle of a southbound transit through the canal when it lost propulsion and crews saw water intrusion in bearings that connect electrical motors to drive shafts. It suffered minor cosmetic damage.

The USS Zumwalt is the Navy’s newest and most technologically advanced surface ship. It arrived at Naval Station Norfolk in September for a port visit.

The Zumwalt is the lead ship of a class of next generation multi-mission destroyers designed to strengthen naval power. Crewed by 147 Sailors, the ship is capable of performing critical maritime missions and enhance the Navy’s ability to provide deterrence, power projection and sea control.

While in Norfolk, Zumwalt performed operational proficiency training, certifications and preparation for its October commissioning.

Following the commissioning ceremony Zumwalt will began its transit to San Diego, making several port visits en route. Upon arrival in San Diego, she is scheduled to take part in a Post Delivery Availability and Mission Systems Activation and is expected to be integrated into the fleet in 2018 following test and evaluation.

DDG 1000 will be the first U.S. Navy combatant surface ship to utilize an integrated power system (IPS) to provide electric power for propulsion and ship services. The IPS generates approximately 78 megawatts of power, nearly what a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier generates, to meet the total ship electric power requirements and provide extra capacity to accommodate future weapons and computing systems.

In addition to its advanced weapon and propulsion systems, Zumwalt is much larger than today’s destroyers.  At 610 feet long and 80.7 feet wide, Zumwalt is 100 feet longer and 13 feet wider, and its flight deck is 93 percent larger than an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer.