Navy's new Zumwalt-class stealth destroyer is too stealthy
New destroyer will deploy reflective material so it's easier for other ships to detect it during peacetime operations.
Apparently you can have too much of a good thing. The Navy is finding that out, after reports have emerged that the service's new Zumwalt-class destroyer is too stealthy. Yep, a military vessel is too hard to detect. So where's the problem?
According to the Associated Press, the issue was uncovered after a local fisherman in the area around the USS Zumwalt's Bath, ME was approached by a ship that his radar said was 40- to 50-feet long. But rather than your average fishing boat, this radar signature belonged to the 610-foot destroyer. That's a navigational hazard, especially at night or in bad weather, if we've ever heard of one.
The solution to this particular conundrum? The A reports that during normal peacetime operations, Zumwalt and her upcoming sister ships will sail with giant reflectors on the hull. These reflectors will counteract the destroyer's stealth properties, which make it 50 times harder to pick up on radar than an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer.
The funny thing is, the futuristic warship isn't even at its most undetectable – in its current form, it has instruments on its sleek hull that actually increase its radar signature. Once those are removed, the Zumwalt-class will be even harder to pick up.
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