Surface Forces: September 12, 2000


The Navy wants the two contractors designing the new DD21 Zumwalt-class land attack destroyer to rethink their design concepts. The ship is intended to have a much reduced crew through the use of advanced automation. The Navy's goal is to operate the ship with a crew of 75 (plus 20 personnel to operate the helicopters); a current destroyer needs a crew of 400. The Navy complains that the contractors are simply automating equipment and not taking advantage of the results.--Stephen V Cole


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