Civil Aviation

Civil Aviation

Our Approach to Civil Aviation

Civil aviation is an industry that requires the best people, systems and strategies to provide the safest, and most efficient aerospace system in the world. Advanced information technology presents the opportunity to create innovative solutions and best practices to help improve the overall operational efficiency of the civil aviation space.

For 75 years, Northrop Grumman has pioneered the world's most advanced aircraft and systems. Across sea, air, land or space, we provide aerospace solutions that advance technology and discovery while meeting customer needs with high impact, best value aerospace products, systems and services.

Mission Planning for Unmanned SystemsMission Planning for Unmanned Systems

Northrop Grumman represents the forefront of unmanned innovation that addresses our customers' national security, humanitarian and disaster relief challenges while advancing scientific and environmental exploration and discovery. This innovation includes the mission planning that helps guide the travel and route of unmanned aircraft. We are pairing our experience and leadership in unmanned systems and mission planning and translating that into the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) air traffic control system, helping make that connection between unmanned and FAA operations.

  • National Security
    A watchful eye from miles above
    From monitoring our nation's busiest ports to patrolling our borders, Global Hawk is there. Since 1995, the technology within each Global Hawk serves as a complement to manned and space reconnaissance systems by providing near-real-time coverage using radar, imagery intelligence sensors, signals intelligence, and communications relay capabilities.

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  • Disaster Relief
    Taking the pulse of the planet
    The NASA Global Hawk conducts high-altitude, long-endurance scientific research here at home. We provide the technical, engineering, maintenance, and operations support of the NASA Global Hawks for our partner, the NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center.

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Mission SystemsMission Systems

Northrop Grumman has a legacy in securely integrating complex data systems leading to low-risk solutions that address our customers' most critical aviation challenges. We ensure quality by leveraging proven processes and partner with our customers to provide customized solutions to meet evolving mission needs.

  • Yesterday
    What we did
    We have a legacy in international air space command and control systems. We continue to enhance our surveillance command and control system that provides integrated radar, surveillance and flight plan data to support air traffic control as well as airspace and management functions.
  • Today
    What we're doing
    We are working with the FAA on an evolutionary approach that leverages existing investments in legacy FAA systems and system migration to organize data and provide a common operational picture to make the job of controllers, pilots and planners easier. The FAA is moving toward a data-centric National Airspace System. We support the management, dissemination and access to aeronautical information for the FAA.
  • Tomorrow
    What we'll do next
    Through our innovative approach and investment in key partners, we will leverage our extensive experience with systems development and systems integration, and pair that with key air traffic management technology partners to help the FAA in their quest to modernize airport surface traffic management.


Northrop Grumman invests resources into our people, partnerships & research and development to anticipate future aviation needs. Through our partnerships, we are able to better recognize customer needs and adapt to the evolving challenges quickly and easily. By understanding the needs of the future workforce, we cultivate an environment that fosters development of future employees and leaders.

  • Research and Development
    Creating technology for the next generation
    We make investments through our Independent R&D Program (IRAD) to address the evolving challenges facing the civil aviation community. IRAD projects create new insights and capabilities for the next generation of aviation systems.
  • Partnerships
    Teamwork makes great work
    We have long standing relationships with over 30 universities, industry associations and aviation organizations. Through these partnerships we help to support research, develop key industry standards, standup joint innovation centers and foster leading edge science, technology and engineering to deliver operational solutions for the FAA.