BETHPAGE, N.Y., July 18, 2006 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has been awarded a contract to perform a study for the United Kingdom's Maritime Airborne Surveillance and Control (MASC) program. This study will concentrate on a manned rotary-wing solution for MASC, which will provide the future maritime airborne early warning and battle management system. Follow-on phases are expected to further define the preferred option or options, working towards a production contract after further U.K. Ministry of Defence approval.

Northrop Grumman's contract is one of several studies that have been awarded.

MASC will be the airborne node of the Royal Navy's network-enabled capability -- the third element in its carrier strike capability and, as such, integrated with the Joint Combat Aircraft and the Future Carrier. The MASC system will take the capabilities currently being provided by the Sea King Mk. 7 airborne surveillance and control variant to the next level. For the winning team, MASC could have application to the needs of other nations as well.

"The essence of MASC will be affordable net-enabled capability," said Tim Farrell, Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems sector vice president for Airborne Early Warning programs. "The program supports the key tenets of the Defence Industrial Strategy from the design of a system that is intensely indigenous, is structured using open architectures, highly amenable to new technologies and capabilities, and is easy on taxpayers."

"MASC will be a key surveillance and battle management asset within a joint or coalition environment in the future. Interoperability will be an important aspect of the MASC system, particularly with the U.S. Navy," said Tom Vice, vice president of business development for Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems. "MASC will not only be a key asset to the Royal Navy but will also provide benefit for the U.S. Navy during joint operations."

Though Northrop Grumman's work on the study will be based in Bethpage, it will include significant interaction with companies in the United Kingdom.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a global defense company headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif. Northrop Grumman provides technologically advanced, innovative products, services and solutions in systems integration, defense electronics, information technology, advanced aircraft, shipbuilding and space technology. With more than 120,000 employees and operations in all 50 states and 25 countries, Northrop Grumman serves U.S. and international military, government and commercial customers.

  CONTACT:  John A. Vosilla
          Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems 
          (516) 575-5119
          John.Vosilla@ngc.com