WASHINGTON, Oct. 18, 2006 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC), the most trusted provider of naval aircraft and unmanned aerial systems (UAS) for the U.S. Department of Defense, formally announced plans today to compete for and capture the U.S. Navy's newest maritime surveillance program. The company will propose a maritime Global Hawk derivative as the centerpiece of its Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) campaign.

"Drawing upon six decades of experience successfully producing maritime surveillance and unmanned aerial systems, we will offer a solution that meets the critical needs of our Navy customers and helps them achieve their goal for a transformational maritime Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) warfighting capability," said Robert A.K. Mitchell, Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems sector vice president of Special Programs.

"Our approach will include a maritime Global Hawk, quite simply the most cost-effective, lowest risk, persistent ISR capability available today and the ideal companion system to the Multi-Mission Maritime Aircraft," Mitchell added.

Northrop Grumman's BAMS UAS solution incorporates maritime capabilities into the Global Hawk Block 20 air vehicle. The system can carry up to 3,000 pounds of payload comprising a variety of sensors optimized for searching, tracking and identifying targets and collecting data over littoral areas and open ocean.

It can conduct missions from a minimum number of operating bases located around the world, putting surveillance information into the hands of fleet and combatant commanders in near-real-time. Its speed, range, payload and endurance are ideally suited to provide a persistent common operational and tactical picture (COTP), a capability not available today on any other system.

Its ability to clearly identify and track target vessels in various sea states from 12 miles above the ocean's surface will extend the Navy's reach to protect battle groups and U.S. territories as well as defend against intruders. It offers multi-channel, line-of-site, and beyond line-of-site connectivity to manned ground-, sea- and air-based command and control nodes. The vehicle can survey more than 40,000 square miles in just 24 hours, an area approximately twice the size of Lake Michigan.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global defense company headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif. Northrop Grumman provides technologically advanced, innovative products, services and solutions in systems integration, defense electronics, information technology, advanced aircraft, shipbuilding and space technology. With more than 120,000 employees and operations in all 50 states and 25 countries, Northrop Grumman serves U.S. and international military, government and commercial customers.

  CONTACT:  Dianne Baumert-Moyik
          Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems
          (516) 346-2142
          Cell (516) 754-2645
          dianne.baumert-moyik@ngc.com