The United States Navy commissioned its newest Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Carl M. Levin (DDG 120), in a ceremony held in Baltimore, Maryland.

The ship’s commissioning paid tribute to the late Senator Carl M. Levin, who served as an advocate for the armed services during his 36-year tenure in the US Senate. The event featured prominent dignitaries and representatives, highlighting the ship’s capabilities and role in the DDG 51 program.

The commissioning ceremony took place at 10:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, 24 June.

The Honorable Carlos Del Toro, Secretary of the Navy, delivered the commissioning ceremony’s principal address. Other notable speakers included Admiral Michael Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations, the Honorable Justin Williams, deputy mayor of the City of Baltimore, and Mr Charles F. Krugh, president of General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, the ship’s manufacturer.

Senator Levin’s daughters, Kate Levin Markel, Erica Levin, and Laura Levin, will sponsor the ship.

Senator Levin is the longest-serving senator in Michigan state history and was a steadfast supporter of the armed services. Throughout his tenure, he demonstrated leadership as Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services.

Senator Levin passed away on 29 July, 2021, leaving a legacy of dedication to national defence.

A strategic presence in the Pacific

As the 72nd Arleigh Burke-class destroyer to be commissioned, the USS Carl M. Levin represents the ongoing commitment of the US Navy to maintain a technologically advanced and capable fleet. The ship’s configuration as a Flight IIA destroyer provides it with power projection capabilities, rapid response capabilities, electronic countermeasures capability for anti-air warfare, and firepower.

With a length of 509.5 feet, a width of 59 feet, and a displacement of 9,496 tons, the USS Carl M. Levin is an impressive addition to the fleet.

The Arleigh Burke is a class of guided missile destroyers (DDGs) being constructed for the US Navy. They are being built around the Aegis Combat System and the SPY-1D multi-function passive electronically scanned array radar, according to a GlobalData report on the “US Defence Market 2022-2027″.

Following the commission, the USS Carl M. Levin will be homeported at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, ensuring its strategic presence in the Pacific. As part of the DDG 51 program, the Navy has 17 ships under contract, highlighting its commitment to maintaining a fleet that meets security challenges.

The USS Carl M. Levin will contribute to the nation’s defence and protect maritime interests in the Indo-Pacific region.

According to GlobalData’s “The Global Naval Vessels and Surface Combatants Market 2023-2033” report, in December 2016, the US Navy released a force-structure goal that calls for the deployment of a fleet of 355 ships of various categories and involves spending $25bn a year till 2049 to regain its superiority.

The US Navy completed acceptance trials of the USS Carl M Levin, at the end of 2022 and took delivery from General Dynamics at the beginning of 2023.