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Northrop to close Carson facility in cost-cutting move

The move, affecting about 800 workers, is part of a larger consolidation effort in anticipation of a prolonged period of federal budget cuts.

March 04, 2013|By W.J. Hennigan, Los Angeles Times

Aerospace giant Northrop Grumman Corp., as part of an ongoing effort to cut costs, is closing one of its facilities in Carson where engineers and scientists have toiled for decades on space-related activities, battlefield command-and-control systems and information technology.

The campus, often referred to as the Dominguez Hills facility, was built in 1987 for TRW Inc. Northrop acquired TRW in 2002.

About 800 people who work in Carson for the company's information systems unit will be affected over the next two years, with many of them relocated to other Northrop facilities nationwide. The company said the transition will be done in phases and begin this year.

Northrop said that although this decision means some facilities will shrink and others will grow, the net effect on its California workforce is "neutral."

The move, announced Monday, is part of a larger consolidation effort in anticipation of a prolonged period of federal budget cuts. The company said it is designating five design and integration centers to support its manned aircraft, unmanned systems and electronic attack businesses.

"Consolidating these centers of excellence will improve our strategic alignment with our customers' need for increasingly innovative and affordable products, services and solutions," Wesley G. Bush, Northrop's chief executive, said in a statement.

"We continuously examine our operational capacity to determine how we can leverage it in the most efficient and cost-competitive manner," Bush said. "Given the current budget environment, it is imperative that we act to enhance future performance, innovation and affordability for our customers."

The company's unmanned systems center will be at its Rancho Bernardo facility in San Diego County. The manned aircraft design center will be in Melbourne, Fla. An electronic attack center will be in Bethpage, N.Y. The company has designated two aircraft integration centers: one in St. Augustine, Fla., and the other in Palmdale.

william.hennigan@latimes.com

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