Bath Iron Works Delivers 72nd Arleigh Burke Destroyer to US Navy

The US Navy has accepted the 72nd Arleigh Burke-class destroyer from Bath Iron Works as part of a contract awarded in 2013.

The USS John Basilone (DDG 122) is a Flight IIA guided missile destroyer incorporating an advanced mine countermeasure solution, helicopter hangars, blast-hardened bulkheads, and additional electronic and networked systems.

A keel-laying ceremony for the ship was held in 2020, followed by its christening two years later.

The Basilone was named after a US Marine Corps sailor who received the Medal of Honor for valor during the Pacific War. He was the only enlisted Marine who received both the Medal of Honor and the Navy Cross during World War II.

The first Basilione vessel (DD-824) was a Gearing-class destroyer that sailed from the 1950s through the 1970s.

“DDG 122 and all of its Sailors will be a living reminder of the perseverance and sacrifice exhibited by its remarkable namesake,” US Navy Arleigh Burke Program Manager Capt. Seth Miller remarked.

“The future USS John Basilone will bring significant capability to the fleet and strengthen our advantage at sea.”

Bath Iron Works is currently working on six additional Arleigh Burke ships, some of which are approved for construction and others set for delivery starting in 2025.

The Arleigh Burke Destroyer

The US Navy’s Arleigh Burke, or DDG 51-class destroyer, is a multi-mission system with offensive and defensive capabilities.

It can deploy independently or be integrated into a Carrier Strike Group, Surface Action Group, or Expeditionary Strike Group.

All versions of the Arleigh Burke contain solutions for anti-submarine, anti-air, and anti-surface warfare.

Since its introduction in the late 1980s, the class has replaced the Spruance, Kidd, and Adams destroyers.

USS Arleigh Burke
The guided missile destroyer USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) steams through the Mediterranean Sea in 2003. Image: Journalist 2nd Class Patrick Reilly/US Navy

Depending on its flight configuration, the Arleigh Burke has an overall length between 154 and 155.3 meters (505 to 509.5 feet).

Its power plant varies from Rolls-Royce generators with 4,000 to 5,400 horsepower to General Electric engines with up to 105,000 horsepower.

The ship’s speed reaches up to 30 knots (56 kilometers/35 miles per hour) and a range of 4,400 nautical miles (5,063 miles/8,100 kilometers).

It carries rigid-hull inflatable boats, up to two MH-60R Seahawk tactical rotorcraft, and has accommodations for more than 350 people.

Throughout its service life, the vessel underwent several upgrades on electronic warfare and decoy solutions, radars, and launch systems. It is armed with lightweight guns, machine guns, directed-energy lasers, multi-domain missiles, and torpedoes.

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