Jack Northrop founded three companies using his name. The first was the Avion Corporation in 1927, which was absorbed in 1929 by the United Aircraft and Transport Corporation as a subsidiary named "Northrop Aviation Corporation". The parent company moved its operations to Kansas in 1931, and so Jack, along with Donald Douglas, established a "Northrop Corporation" located in El Segundo, California, which produced several successful designs, including the Northrop Gamma and Northrop Delta. However, labor difficulties led to the dissolution of the corporation by Douglas in 1937, and the plant became the El Segundo Division of Douglas Aircraft.
Northrop still wanted his own company, and so in 1939 established the "Northrop Corporation" in nearby Hawthorne, California, a site located by co-founder Moye Stephens. The corporation lasted until 1994. It was there that the P-61 night fighter, the Flying Wings (B-35 and YB-49), the F-89 interceptor, the Snark intercontinental missile and the F-5 jet fighter (and its derivative, the successful T-38 trainer) were developed and built.
In 1994, partly due to the loss of the Advanced Tactical Fighter contract to Lockheed Martin and the removal of their proposal from consideration for the Joint Strike Fighter competition, the company merged with Grumman to form Northrop Grumman.
The company was notable in the 1940s for experimentation with flying wings; although a number of designs were flight-tested, only the B-2 stealth bomber of the 1980s ever made it to production and deployment.
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It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Northrop".