US Navy Secretary Richard V Spencer has said that the newest Arleigh Burke-class (DDG 51) guided-missile destroyer, the pre-commissioning unit Thomas Hudner (DDG 116), will be commissioned in Boston later on this year.
Commanded by US Navy commander Nathan Scherry, DDG 116 is the 66th Arleigh Burke-class destroyer and the 36th DDG 51-class destroyer constructed by General Dynamics subsidiary Bath Iron Works (BIW).
The ship is fitted with the Aegis baseline 9 combat system, which features an integrated air and missile defence (IAMD) capability. It incorporates ballistic missile defence 5.0 capability upgrade and naval integrated fire control-counter air.
The IAMD radar will provide the destroyer with increased computing power and radar upgrades that will help enhance the vessel’s detection and reaction capabilities against modern air warfare threats.
Once commissioned with the US Navy, the future USS Thomas Hudner will set sail to its homeport in Mayport, Florida.
While keel on DDG 116 was laid on 16 November 2015, the vessel was christened on 1 April last year during a ceremony at the BIW shipyard in Bath, Maine.
The 513ft-long Thomas Hudner guided-missile destroyer was launched on 23 April 2017.
On 31 March this year, the future USS Thomas Hudner successfully completed builder’s tests and concluded acceptance trials on 3 May.
With a displacement of 9,217t, the navy ship is capable of travelling at a speed of more than 30k and can accommodate two SH-60R light airborne multi-purpose system (LAMPS) MKIII helicopters.
The Arleigh Burke-class destroyers can carry out a wide range of operations, varying from peacetime presence to national security.