WOODLAND HILLS, Calif., Nov. 28, 2006 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- A high reliability fiber-optic inertial measurement unit from Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has been selected by Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation (NYSE:UTX) for the BLACK HAWK UH-60M Fly-by-Wire-Upgrade Program to supply navigation information for the BLACK HAWK'S flight control computers.

The UH-60M program will upgrade the U.S. Army's current BLACK HAWK fleet of UH-60A and UH-60L models into the UH-60M standardized configuration. The upgrades will incorporate a digitized cockpit for improved aircraft systems that will increase combat situational awareness and extend the service life of the aircraft. The UH-60M is currently in low rate production.

"We are excited Sikorsky selected our BLACK HAWK-certified system to meet the needs of this important U.S. Army helicopter platform," said Mark Casady, vice president of Navigation and Positioning Systems for Northrop Grumman's Navigation Systems Division. "Our selection demonstrates how Northrop Grumman's high reliability fiber-optic gyro inertial systems offer an ideal choice for mission-critical avionics systems."

The new unit uses the LN-200 inertial measurement unit that is currently in operation on U.S. Army BLACK HAWK helicopters and is also deployed in many other applications across a wide variety of military platforms. The estimated mean time between failures for the LN-200 exceeds 19,000 hours, surpassing the reliability offered by ring laser gyroscope-based inertial measurement units. The LN-200 has been in high rate production since 1993 with more than 10,000 units delivered to customers.

The UH-60 flies more than 40 percent of the Army's annual flying hours and is the Army's utility helicopter used worldwide for the transport of troops, equipment and weapon systems. It performs multiple missions, ranging from medical evacuation/search and rescue to command and control and air assault.

Northrop Grumman Corporation will deliver three inertial measurement units for each of the 90 helicopters covered in the initial contract. Northrop Grumman projects future orders of these inertial measurement units will exceed 1,200 domestic helicopters, and it foresees additional international opportunities. The first UH-60M inertial measurement unit will be delivered in May of 2007.

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., based in Stratford, Conn., is a world leader in helicopter design, manufacturing, and service. It is a subsidiary of United Technologies Corp., (NYSE:UTX), of Hartford, Conn., which provides a broad range of high-technology products and support services to the aerospace and building systems industries.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a $30 billion global defense and technology company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.

  CONTACT:  Don Barteld  
          Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems
          (818) 712-6179 
          don.barteld@ngc.com