Staff Writer (Updated: 9/10/2016):
The Zumwalt-class represents the most advanced guided missile destroyer group of the modern USN. These are "multi-mission", ocean-going vessels built on speed with a balanced set of offensive and defensive capabilities. As such, they can be called to operate as part of the main ocean-going force or serve as independent units with equal lethality. Extensive advanced onboard systems (for both processing and combat) as well as naval stealth technology figure largely into their design. Their structures are wholly unique to the world of naval destroyers, lacking any hand rails or similar obstructions and featuring slab-sides with angular faces. The vessels have near-featureless bows (save for a pair of deck gun turrets, and stern-based flight decks and well-tapered overall shapes to cut through water. The main superstructure is centrally-located in the usual way and houses the bridge, communications/tracking/engagement systems and smoke funnel.
The USS Michael Monsoor is powered y 2 x Rolls-Royce Marine Trent-30 gas turbine engines supported y auxiliary diesel units. This allows the sleek vessel a top ocean-going speed of up to 30 knots. She is crewed by 140 personnel and displaces at 14,500 tons. Measurements include a length of 600 feet with a beam of 80.5 feet and draught of 27.5 feet. Her onboard processing systems include the AN/SPY-3 series Multi-Function Radar (MFR) unit, the Volume Search Radar (VSR) and sonar.
Armament is at the heart of the Zumwalt-class destroyer group and in this department the Monsoor does not disappoint. She is outfitted with 20 x Mk 57 Vertical Launcher Systems (VLSs) numbering 80 x cells in all (4 cells to each module). She features the RIM-162 "Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile" (ESSM) anti-aircraft missile which is based on the original aircraft-carried Sparrow line of old. The Monsoor also supports an Anti-Submarine ROCket (ASROC) system while more "conventional" munition-fed armament includes 2 x 155mm Advanced Gun Systems (AGSs) along the forecastle (precision ranged firing against surface warships and offshore targets) and 2 x 57mm Mk 110 Close-In Weapon Systems (CIWSs) for short-range defense against aerial targets (low-flying aircraft and cruise missiles). The flight deck at the stern supports the launching and retrieval of 2 x Sikorsky SH-60 LAMPS anti-submarine naval helicopters or 1 x Sikorsky MH-60R medium-lift transport helicopter as well as 3 x Northrop Grumman MQ-8 "Fire Scout" helicopter Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
USS Michael Monsoor was christened on June 18th, 2016. Sea trials will follow.