Magazine article National Defense

Northrop Engineer Gets Survivability Award

Magazine article National Defense

Northrop Engineer Gets Survivability Award

Article excerpt

Thomas L. Dobrenz, an engineer at Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems, received NDIA's Combat Survivability Award at a recent symposium in Monterey, Calif.

Dobrenz was chosen for his contributions to stealth or low-observable technology. He has worked for nearly 25 years at Northrop Grumman, helping to design aircraft such as the B-2 bomber, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and X-47B combat unmanned air vehicle.

The term "survivability' describes the ability of a combat aircraft to complete its mission without being detected and destroyed by the enemy. Dobrenz has worked in the field since he joined the company in 1980, shortly after graduation from Northrop University.

"When he started out in the early 1980s, the very concept of stealth was highly classified, while today people expect stealth to be an inherent part of the design of any new combat aircraft," said Gary W. Erwin, vice president of Integrated Systems.

In 1986, Dobrenz was promoted to technical manager of low observables and special projects. In 1991, he joined the B-2 program. From 1997 to 2001, he led the F-35 survivability team for JSF prime contractor Lockheed Martin. For the past three and a half years, he has directed his division's systems integration and survivability activities.

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