REDONDO BEACH, Calif., May 5, 2003 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) was awarded a contract from NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., to continue development of an engine that will increase the safety, reliability and affordability of next-generation reusable space launch and transportation vehicles.

The $21 million contract for the TR107, a one-million-pound thrust class liquid oxygen/kerosene reusable engine that operates on an oxidizer-rich staged combustion cycle, is part of Next Generation Launch Technology under the Space Launch Initiative (SLI). Under this 18-month contract, engine components will be subjected to hot fire testing to demonstrate technology developments.

"We are pleased to be part of NASA's continued emphasis on technology development to provide our nation with low-cost access to space," said Tom Romesser, Northrop Grumman Space Technology, vice president, technology development. "The award of this contract enables NASA to use our innovative propulsion technologies to achieve its Next Generation Launch Technology goals."

The TR107 has been under development for two years under an earlier phase of NASA's SLI program. Northrop Grumman conducted trade studies and developed baseline conceptual designs. Northrop Grumman leads a team that includes Allison Advanced Development Company, Indianapolis, Ind.; Concepts NREC, White River Junction, Vt.; Barber Nichols, Inc., Arvada, Colo.; Sierra Engineering, Carson City, Nev.; and several independent experts.

These technologies include a duct-cooled main chamber, a pre-burner pintle injector and materials that do not require coatings for the oxidizer-rich environment. The TR107 provides high performance with a simple robust design that minimizes the parts count for greater reliability and operability and also minimizes the power head operating pressures to increase engine life.

Northrop Grumman Space Technology is a leading developer of satellite systems for the military and civil space markets.

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  CONTACT: Sally Koris
         Northrop Grumman Space Technology
         (310) 812-4721