REDONDO BEACH, Calif., Nov. 26, 2007 (PRIME NEWSWIRE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has completed qualification testing of the payload flight software for the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (EHF) military communications satellite payload. This represents the first-ever flight qualification of the new Extended Data Rate (XDR) capability provided by Advanced EHF. The company is providing the Advanced EHF payloads to Lockheed Martin, prime contractor for the Advanced EHF system.

Advanced EHF, using XDR capability and other advanced technologies and designs, will provide 10 times more communications capacity and six times higher channel data rates than the predecessor Milstar system, which provides Low Data Rate (LDR) and Medium Data Rate (MDR) waveforms. The Advanced EHF payload will support legacy LDR and MDR waveforms for backward compatibility with Milstar terminals, in addition to the more advanced XDR capability.

The payload flight software supports all LDR, MDR and XDR terminals, and consists of approximately 500,000 lines of real-time, distributed, embedded code executing simultaneously on a configuration of 25 on-board processors.

Advanced EHF is a joint-service satellite communications system that will provide global, secure, protected communications for high-priority military ground, sea and air assets. Lockheed Martin Space Systems is under contract to provide three Advanced EHF satellites and the mission control system to the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center, Military Satellite Communications Systems Wing, located at the Los Angeles Air Force Base.

"Our team's proven software development processes combined with extensive experience with protected satellite communications systems have enabled on-time development and certification of this highly complex software," said Gabe Watson, vice president and program manager for Advanced EHF at the Northrop Grumman Space Technology sector.

"XDR software qualification is not only an important accomplishment for Advanced EHF, but also for future systems that will require XDR capability," said Stuart Linsky, vice president of Satellite Communications for the Northrop Grumman Space Technology sector.

The first Advanced EHF satellite is in the midst of final integration and test at Lockheed Martin's facilities in Sunnyvale, Calif. in preparation for launch next year. The second and third Advanced EHF satellites are close behind in the production flow. Other military satellite communications programs, including the Transformational Satellite Communications System (TSAT) and the Enhanced Polar System, also will utilize XDR waveforms.

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:  Diane Murphy
          Northrop Grumman Space Technology
          (310) 812-4702