With the increasing threat of the People Liberation's Army to Asian countries, the US Navy has a new Stealth Destroyer to the US Fleet which increases its combat levels significantly.
This is just timely in an era when combat effectiveness is crucial, and adoption of stealth abilities for ships will increase a first hit chance on opponents of the US Navy in the high seas.
The warship comes at a time when the PLA is bolstering its fleets to match the US Navy fleet, one big difference it offers is technology to overcome any adversary.
For the US Navy to counter such threats like the advancing PLA, it has started on modernization program of the Navy that includes new weapons and countermeasures to blunt the newest anti-ship weapons of the People's Liberation Army (PLA).
In a one-two punch, the US Navy did not just only receive the very first stealth destroyer, but a Flight IIA Arleigh Burke-class destroyer which is more capable than other warships in the US Navy's inventory.
This modernization will keep the quality over quantity as the basis of reliable fighting ships, built to take it to toe to toe with whatever the PLA can throw.
Most modern destroyer in the US arsenal
According to the navy, the DDG-1000 Zumwalt is one of 'a three-ship class of stealth destroyers delivered to the Navy nearly four years when the building started. It was delivered in two parts, the hull (mechanical and electrical systems in 2016) and combat systems on April 24, 2020.
With Congress in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act indicating it will not be included in the battle force until completion the combat systems were fully done. November 2016, BAE Systems was awarded a $192 million contract to develop the combat system for the Zumwalt and the sister ship, the Michael Monsoor.
Developing the stealth ship was not easy with rising costs and change while in construction. Being built as a platform for the Advanced Gun System, to surface strike vessel.
Purchase of Zumwalt-class destroyers was reduced from 28 to 7 ships, then only 3 ships, because the ammunition is very costly, each Long-Range Land Attack Projectile is expensive to shoot. A new kind of cheaper ammo is needed.
From advance gun platform to a ship killer, that integrates the Maritime Strike Tomahawk and SM-6 missiles integrated into the next-gen combat system.
Sources say that the Michael Monsoor will have its combat systems online by 2nd quarter 2020, confirmed by the Naval Sea Systems Command program brief from January. One of the last sister ships is the Lyndon B. Johnson located at the Bath Iron Works in Maine, with expected delivery by December 2020.
When completed the ship will head to San Diego, California, to have the combat systems fitted and installed the same as the two Zumwalt-destroyers.
The lost advantage is the delivery of the Areligh Burke-class destroyer Delbert Black, DDG-119, constructed in Huntington Ingalls Industries' shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi.
One accident that struck the Delbert Black when a Norway-barge hit it, caused a delay with $31 million damages.
Overall the US Navy has four destroyers at Huntington Ingalls, under construction, with the Flight IIA destroyers Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG-121) and the Lenah H. Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG-123), and Flight III destroyers Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) and Ted Stevens (DDG-128). These ships are to join the fleet and be the blunting edge.