MAYPORT, Fla. (NNS) -- The Navy's most technologically advanced warship, guided-missile destroyer USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000), arrived in Mayport, Florida, for a port visit Oct. 25 after a period of operations in the Atlantic Ocean.
Zumwalt, the lead ship of a class of next-generation, multi-mission destroyers, features a state-of-the-art electric propulsion system, wave-piercing tumblehome hull, stealth design, and the latest warfighting technology and weaponry available.
Mayport marks Zumwalt's fifth port visit after departing the Bath Iron Works shipyard Sept. 7.
The ship was commissioned Oct. 15 in a ceremony in Baltimore, during which Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus delivered the principal address to more than 7,000 guests.
"We arrived in Mayport after a highly successful commissioning week in Baltimore," said Capt. James A. Kirk, commanding officer of Zumwalt. "The crew has performed superbly through a period of at-sea operations and testing, and will now get a chance to experience the hospitality and professionalism of Mayport Naval Station and the surrounding community."
The ship's crew members will conduct maintenance and training while moored in Mayport, but will also get a chance to enjoy liberty and recreational events.
"Mayport has a strong legacy of support to the Navy," Kirk commented on the significance of Zumwalt's inaugural visit to the coastal community. "It is one that I have experienced firsthand over several tours of duty, and we are fortunate to have the chance to visit and experience the unique and diverse culture of Florida."
The Zumwalt-class destroyer will be capable of performing a range of deterrence, power projection, sea control, and command and control missions while allowing the Navy to evolve with new systems and missions. It does all of this while maintaining its stealth -- making this visually-imposing ship difficult to find whether close to the shore or far out to sea.
While in port, Zumwalt Sailors will conduct tours and engagements with other Mayport surface ships from U.S. 4th Fleet.
"We are pleased to have the opportunity to showcase this fine vessel to our shipmates here in Mayport, and to interact with the tremendous community that supports a vital component of our surface fleet," said Kirk.
Zumwalt embodies the legacy of warfighting excellence and innovation of Adm. Elmo R. Zumwalt Jr., a veteran of World War II and the conflicts in Korea and Vietnam. He exemplified honor, courage, and commitment during 32 years of dedicated naval service. Believing it was his job to "modernize and humanize" the Navy, Zumwalt chose to embrace change and to lead it from within.
Zumwalt was a social reformer who was devoted to Sailors and creating an environment where everyone was treated equally -- a legacy that can that can be seen today in the diversity of the fleet. His "one Navy" mentality reminds today's Sailors that taking care of our warfighters ensures the Navy remains tough, bold, and ready.
"Words cannot express my gratitude for the work the Zumwalt crew has performed over the past six months," said Kirk. "They have demonstrated superb technical expertise, teamwork, and toughness, and are now proud plankowners of a commissioned warship proudly serving in the fleet."
Zumwalt will challenge adversaries and their way of thinking about how the U.S. employs forces, providing an asymmetric advantage. Working with Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, littoral combat ships, and amphibious ships to form adaptive force packages, Zumwalt-class destroyers will use their computing capabilities to make these groups more lethal through increased range, deception, computer integration, and data analysis from various platforms. With its stealth, size, power, and advanced combat systems, this warship will serve as a centerpiece for deterrence and stability in the maritime environment.
Zumwalt is scheduled to begin her transit to her new homeport of San Diego, making several port visits along the way. Upon arrival in San Diego, Zumwalt will begin installation of her combat systems, testing and evaluation, and operational integration with the fleet.
Once fully integrated, Zumwalt's stealth, power, and lethality will provide a vital link from the Navy's current needs to its future capabilities.
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For more news from USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000), visit http://www.navy.mil/local/DDG1000/.