BETHPAGE, N.Y., July 7, 2009 -- Manufacturing of Northrop Grumman Corporation's (NYSE:NOC) first Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, the sixth E-2D to be produced, has kicked off with the start of keel assembly at the company's East Coast Manufacturing and Flight Test Center in St. Augustine, Fla.

The work is being performed under a $432 million contract awarded June 15 by the U.S. Navy, which includes two LRIP Lot 1 aircraft and an Advanced Acquisition Contract for two LRIP Lot II aircraft, as well as associated engineering and testing.

"The start of Low-Rate Initial Production brings us one step closer to delivering this high-quality, reliable E-2D Advanced Hawkeye weapons system to the warfighter," said Jim Culmo, vice president of Airborne Early Warning and Battle Management Command and Control programs for Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems sector. "In addition to this first LRIP Lot I aircraft, the first three pilot production E-2D aircraft are moving through the production process, ahead of schedule, and we are on track to deliver the first pilot production aircraft in 2010."

While the state-of-the-art E-2D's external appearance is similar to the E-2C, presently in operation with the U.S. Navy and four international customers, the systems and capabilities contained in the E-2D have been completely redesigned. At the heart of this redesign is the new, more powerful AN/APY-9 radar, designed and built by a radar team led by Lockheed Martin. Representing a two-generational leap in radar technology, the AN/APY-9 can "see" smaller targets, and more of them, at a greater range than currently fielded radar systems.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a leading global security company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products, and solutions in aerospace, electronics, information systems, shipbuilding and technical services to government and commercial customers worldwide.

  CONTACT:  Kirsti Dunn
          Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems
          (301) 373-2388, x2722