APOPKA, Fla., May 24, 2004 (PRIMEZONE) -- The U.S. Army has selected Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) to equip more Army forces with the Mark VII system, a lightweight, handheld target location system with an eyesafe laser rangefinder and switchable direct-view day-vision and image-intensifier night-vision capability which enables ground forces to pinpoint critical enemy targets.

The contract, valued at $35 million, is for the production of 1,008 Mark VII laser target locator systems.

Northrop Grumman's Laser Systems business unit has delivered 96 Mark VII systems to the Army since May 2003 as part of an initial 315-unit order. Deliveries under the current follow-on contract are expected to begin in August 2004.

"The advanced laser technology of the Mark VII and its compact design are critical to forward observers, forward air controllers, and long-range reconnaissance patrols," said Steve Guch, director of the Laser Systems business unit.

The Mark VII also features an imbedded digital magnetic compass and provides range, azimuth, and elevation digital data output for accurate target location determination. The Mark VII is currently used by several branches of the U.S. armed forces as well as a number of NATO allied forces.

Northrop Grumman Laser Systems, based in Apopka, Fla., is one of the world's leading manufacturers of military laser systems. These include ground-based (vehicle mounted and handheld) laser rangefinders for target location (both eyesafe and non-eyesafe), laser designators/markers for precise guidance of smart munitions, and airborne laser rangefinders and designators fielded onboard many of the world's most sophisticated fighter aircraft.

Laser Systems is a component of Northrop Grumman's Baltimore-based Electronic Systems sector, a world leader in the design, development, and manufacture of defense and commercial electronic systems, including airborne radar systems, navigation systems, electronic warfare systems, precision weapons, airspace management systems, air defense systems, communications systems, space systems, marine systems, oceanic and naval systems, government systems, and logistic services.

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  CONTACT:  Katie Lamb
          Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems
          (847) 259-9600, ext. 3542