ARLINGTON, Va., Oct. 18, 2001 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC), a co-builder of the U.S. Navy's Arleigh Burke Aegis destroyers, has committed $175,000 over five years to sponsor the U.S. Naval Institute's Arleigh Burke Essay Contest. The announcement commemorates Adm. Burke's 100th birthday on Oct. 19.

The Naval Institute's most prestigious essay contest is open to all; for details, visit www.navalinstitute.org . The top three essayists receive $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000, accompanied by gold, silver and bronze medals, respectively. The top-prize winner also receives a life membership in the Naval Institute. The three winning essays will be published in the May 2002 issue of Proceedings. Essays must be postmarked on or before Dec. 1, 2001.

Arleigh Burke Essay contestants, writing within the broad topic of advancing the knowledge of sea power, include the most serious thinkers on military topics today and throughout its long history. Winners have included names familiar to any student of maritime history, such as Cmdr. Alfred Thayer Mahan; Cmdr. Bradley Fiske; Lt. Ernest King; Lt. Cmdr. Dudley Knox; author Tom Clancy's fictional Jack Ryan; and Dr. Philip A. Dur, a former lieutenant commander and currently Northrop Grumman corporate vice president and president of the company's Ship Systems sector.

Originally titled the General Prize Essay Contest when it began in 1879, the competition was renamed in 1985 in honor of Adm. Burke, one of the most beloved and respected chiefs of naval operations.

Born on Oct. 19, 1901, Adm. "31 Knot" Burke was known for driving his destroyers as fast as possible while retaining enough fuel to win decisive sea battles in the Pacific during World War II. Chief of Naval Operations for an unprecedented six years from 1955-1961, he was the first living U.S. Navy officer to be honored by having a class of ship named after him.

"We are very pleased to sponsor this prestigious 122-year-old essay contest that rewards writers for advancing the importance of sea power," said Dr. Dur. "Northrop Grumman is proud to be the first company to sponsor the Arleigh Burke Essay Contest and we look forward to working with the Naval Institute on this most worthwhile project."

The publisher of Proceedings and Naval History magazines and more than 800 professional books, the Naval Institute is a membership organization for Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Coast Guard professionals and for others interested in the sea services.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a $15 billion global aerospace and defense company with its worldwide headquarters in Los Angeles, Calif. Northrop Grumman provides technologically advanced, innovative products, services and solutions in defense and commercial electronics, systems integration, information technology and non-nuclear shipbuilding and systems. With 80,000 employees and operations in 44 states and 25 countries, Northrop Grumman serves U.S. and international military, government and commercial users.

  CONTACT:  Northrop Grumman Corporation
          Larry Hamilton
          (703) 875-8450

          Naval Institute
          Carolyn Schwenk
          (410) 295-1058