MEDIA ADVISORY, Sept. 21, 2004 (PRIMEZONE) -- The Tactical High Energy Laser, built by Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) for the U.S. Army, shot down multiple mortar rounds Aug. 24, proving that laser weapons could be applied on the battlefield to protect against common threats.

In tests representative of actual mortar threat scenarios, the THEL testbed destroyed both single mortar rounds and mortar rounds fired in a salvo at White Sands Missile Range, N.M.

Video footage of the history-making shootdown will be available Tuesday, Sept. 21, as indicated. All footage is being provided courtesy of Northrop Grumman and the Army.

 Sept. 21, 2004 (EDT)    Satellite       Transponder      Frequency

 11:30 a.m. - 12 Noon   AMC 9 (at 85
                        degrees west)       K09       11880 Vertical

  3 p.m. -  3:30 p.m.   AMC 9 (at 85 
                        degrees west)       K09       11880 Vertical


The video footage will repeat approximately four times during each half-hour. If you have problems receiving this transmission, please call 818.879.2377.

  Scene Descriptions
                 Laser Shoots Down Mortar Rounds
                          On Aug. 24, 2004

 - THEL testbed
 - Pointer/tracker subsystem
 - Mortar round being prepared and fired
 - Mortar round being tracked
 - Mortar round viewed by shared aperture camera (SAC)
 - THEL infrared beam tracks mortar round
 - Lasing seen in SAC
 - Off-axis tracker (OAT) with laser beam on mortar - slow motion
 - Mortar rounds destroyed - various views of two single mortars
   shootdowns, plus salvo of three mortar rounds in a 
   single engagement
 - Laser team observes test

You can also view the latest video clips, download images, and obtain background information on lasers and the THEL program at

  CONTACT:  Bob Bishop
          Northrop Grumman Space Technology
          Cell: 310.567.4919
          Office: 310.812.5227