Defense Industry Daily website (1) reports that GD Bath Iron Works has received a contract to build a steel superstructure for DDG-1002 rather than composite. Wouldn’t you love to know what the Navy’s reason for that was? We’ve discussed some of the issues, here and here, involved in the Zumwalt program and the suitability of the composite superstructure was one of those. Specific concerns included steel-composite joint problems, structural strength, ballistic resistance, damage control issues, difficulty of production, maintenance and repairability, etc. Apparently, the Navy has run into problems sufficiently difficult to cause them to revert to steel.
We’ll keep an eye out for more on this.