Drone and people in the background
A crowd learns about drones at an event at Coconut Island organized by the Applied Research Lab in October 2018. (Photo courtesy of ARL)

The Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa has been awarded a $77.2 million, five-year contract from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). ARL will conduct research, development, engineering, and test and evaluation of programs.

UH is home to the first Navy-sponsored university-affiliated research center to be established since the 1940s,” said ARL Director Margo Edwards. “The renewal of ARL’s contract for another five years recognizes the innovative research conducted today at UH, which has the potential to solve challenges facing the Department of Defense moving forward.”

ARL was established in 2008 as a Navy-sponsored lab and is one of 13 university-affiliated research centers within the DoD. The work conducted as part of ARL’s contract has been documented to save the federal government millions of dollars while providing vital services.

Core competency areas include ocean science, astronomy, sensor development, remote sensing, renewable energy and mission-related research and development. There is no offensive weapons research.

ARL has helped modernize DoD facilities, and is providing innovative, cost-effective approaches to address threats, including humanitarian assistance and disaster relief in response to natural and man-made hazards,” said Edwards.

Work is conducted by undergraduate and graduate students, professors and researchers. ARL also mentors a few high school students via summer internships.