BALTIMORE, Aug. 10, 2004 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has received a two-year contract to develop a radar replacement "kit" that will improve performance and enhance reliability in approximately 280 U.S. Air Force F-16C and D fighter aircraft.

Designated the AN/APG-68(V)9, the radar has been sold to six foreign customers as standard equipment on new F-16s. To date, Northrop Grumman's Electronic Systems sector has delivered 150 of the radars to aircraft manufacturer Lockheed Martin on or ahead of schedule, marking another milestone in the successful 28-year production of fire-control radars for the F-16.

The (V)9 variant provides a 33 percent improvement in air-to-air detection range over earlier versions of the radar and introduces synthetic aperture radar, which allows high-resolution ground mapping for 24-hour, all-weather precision strike capability. The combination of new technology with open-systems architecture also reduces total ownership cost of the radar.

"This kit offers a very economical way to make a critical upgrade to the aircraft and provides our Air Force with a substantial boost in capability," said Bruce Ballantyne, vice president of F-16 Sensor Systems at Northrop Grumman. "The integration of these kits in the Air Force's F-16 is central to planned, continual improvement of the aircraft, ensuring its combat viability for decades to come."

The value of the two-year contract is $22 million.

Based in Baltimore, Md., Northrop Grumman's Electronic Systems sector is a world leader in the design, development, and manufacture of defense and commercial electronic systems and sensors, including airborne radar, navigation systems, electronic countermeasures, precision weapons, airspace management systems, communications systems, space sensors, marine and naval systems, government systems, and logistics services.

  CONTACT:  Doug Cantwell
          Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems
          (410) 765-9332 (office)
          (410) 979-3647 (mobile)
          douglas.cantwell@ngc.com