HERNDON, Va., Dec. 9, 2002 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has been awarded an indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contract by the U.S. Air Force Materiel Command to conduct research into the physiological effects that occur when personnel are exposed to laser radiation and how these effects impact visual performance.

These research areas, including laser safety, vision science, laser eye protection and personnel susceptibility, are significant to the safe testing and use of major laser weapon systems. The contract is worth up to $45 million over five years to Northrop Grumman's Information Technology (IT) sector. Work on this program will be performed at Northrop Grumman IT in San Antonio.

Under the terms of the Optical Radiation Research and Field Services contract, Northrop Grumman IT will investigate the phenomena associated with the interaction of laser beams with biological systems. The company will establish safe limits for laser exposure, and develop and test laser eye protection media. Additionally, Northrop Grumman IT will create models of visual performance in the presence of laser illumination, and will develop software tools that will enable safe testing of very high energy laser weapon systems. This type of research is critical to the safe testing and use of laser devices and weapons. Laser protective visors and spectacles used by aircrews today are a direct result of the ongoing research by Northrop Grumman IT at Brooks Air Force Base, Texas.

"Northrop Grumman IT is committed to supporting the Air Force Research Laboratory with this important optical radiation and laser safety research," said Kent Schneider, president, Defense Enterprise Solutions, Northrop Grumman IT. "We have conducted this type of research for more than 10 years and this contract win allows the company to continue its predominant technical excellence in laser eye protection and safety, vision science and directed energy bioeffects."

Northrop Grumman IT team members for this program include Veridian, and Mobium Enterprises, Dayton, Ohio; Conceptual MindWorks, Inc., and University of Texas, San Antonio; Science and Engineering Associates, Albuquerque, N.M.; and Georgia Tech Research Institute, Atlanta.

Northrop Grumman Information Technology, headquartered in Herndon, Va., is a trusted IT leader and premier provider of advanced IT solutions, engineering and business services for federal, state and local government and commercial clients. The company's expertise spans such areas as information systems integration; command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR); enterprise hardware and software solutions; training and simulation; base and range support; signals intelligence; space systems; and specialized scientific, engineering and technical services.

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  CONTACT:  Juli Ballesteros
          Northrop Grumman Information Technology
          (703) 713-4675