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Northrop Grumman to Expand Capabilities for F/A-22 Raptor

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 2, 2005 (PRIMEZONE) -- Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has begun work on an F/A-22 modernization program that will add capabilities to the aircraft's communications, navigation and identification (CNI) system to enhance network-centric operations for the next-generation, air-dominance fighter weapon system.

The CNI avionics are being developed by the Radio Systems business of Northrop Grumman's Space Technology sector, under contract to Lockheed Martin. When fully developed, the system will enable numerous critical CNI functions for the F/A-22.

A key concept in the U.S. Department of Defense's vision for the future is network-centric warfare, which links sensors, communications systems and weapon systems in an interconnected grid that allows for seamless information flow to warfighters, decision makers and support personnel.

To support this vision, Northrop Grumman's F/A-22 modernization program will ensure that the CNI architecture is compliant with the requirements of the Joint Tactical Radio System program. Northrop Grumman will also add Link-16 capability to the CNI system. Link-16 is a tactical data link that provides greater situational awareness through the jam-resistant transfer of voice and data between battle participants.

"The F/A-22's expanding information capabilities will increase the pilot's ability to engage targets with unmatched battlespace awareness," said Jim Byloff, F/A-22 program director, Radio Systems, Northrop Grumman Space Technology. "Our modernization program will not only reduce the cost of the F/A-22's CNI system, it improves interoperability and increases sharing of unique information from the best sensors in the fleet."

Northrop Grumman's CNI system utilizes sophisticated software-defined radio technology to simultaneously support numerous capabilities such as various voice and data communications, automatic acquisition of fly-to points and friend-or-foe identification. The system can also dynamically reconfigure these functions to support priorities defined by missions. Using software-defined radio technology, Northrop Grumman's CNI system is a fraction of the size and weight of the single-function radios previously required to implement the same functions. This "smart-box" approach allows for increased performance, quicker deployment, higher availability, enhanced scalability and lower lifecycle cost.

The F/A-22 Raptor, the world's most advanced fighter, is slated to reach initial operational capability in December 2005 at Langley Air Force Base, Va. The F/A-22's balanced design of stealth, super cruise speed, supportability and super agility, along with its advanced integrated avionics, will enable combat commanders to change the way future wars are fought -- making them shorter, while saving American and allied lives.

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 125,000 employees, and operations in all 50 states and 25 countries, Northrop Grumman serves U.S. and international military, government and commercial customers.

CONTACT:  Sudi Bruni
          Northrop Grumman Space Technology
          (858) 592-3407
          sudi.bruni@ngc.com