REDONDO BEACH, Calif., April 11, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) have teamed to build and launch operational surveillance satellites in a responsive production cycle to provide U.S. government users with unique, all-weather, day/night imaging capabilities.
The initiative is a rapid response, low-risk and affordable space-based radar imaging system designed for 24-hour surveillance in all weather conditions from a low earth orbit. The system is planned as an operationally responsive space initiative that can deliver critical new capabilities to users about 28 months after authorization to proceed.
Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector will combine its proven intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) mission systems engineering and systems integration capability with IAI's TECSAR high-resolution, synthetic aperture radar imaging satellite. Mission assurance capabilities, including secure communications and other U.S. system requirements, will be incorporated into the spacecraft by Northrop Grumman with final integration and test at its facilities in Redondo Beach, Calif.
Based on IAI's TECSAR multi-mode X-band radar imaging satellite, this new system can provide significant, near-term, day/night and all-weather point and area collection capability to meet the immediate needs of warfighters in theater as well as those of the broader intelligence community. The first TECSAR satellite is scheduled for launch in summer 2007 for the Israeli Ministry of Defence. Northrop Grumman plans to demonstrate the new rapid response capability following the launch.
"This new system provides a capability that complements both existing and U.S. military and intelligence community capabilities being developed," said Alexis Livanos, corporate vice president and president of Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector. "When they want to move quickly on any given contingency, users now have an option that offers greatly reduced timelines for deploying tactical satellites at low cost and at very low risk."
"An all-weather, day/night system like this adds an operationally responsive capability to the U.S. inventory that is critically needed," said Jeff Grant, vice president of Business Development for Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector. "Adding a responsive radar imager to our current and planned mix of space and airborne assets will enable us to hold the high ground on a global scale when dealing with the threats we face today."
The satellite is operated with a compact, portable ground system that provides the flexibility to perform tasking and data dissemination from the continental U.S. or from any operational theater. The satellites can be individually launched from a low-cost Minotaur or Falcon 1 rocket, or as a group of four or more on an EELV-class launcher.
Israel Aerospace Industries, formerly known as Israel Aircraft Industries, is a recognized leader in the aerospace and defense industry and Israel's largest industrial exporter. IAI, the developer of the TECSAR spacecraft, is one of Israel's leading defense electronics companies and a leader in intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance applications.
Northrop Grumman Corporation is a $30 billion global defense and technology company whose 122,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in information and services, electronics, aerospace and shipbuilding to government and commercial customers worldwide.
CONTACT: Bob Bishop Northrop Grumman Space Technology (310) 812-5227 (310) 251-0261 (cell) email@example.com