Secretary of Defense speaking into microphone.

"Innovation is central here. Last year, for instance, we established the Rapid Defense Experimentation Reserve, which funds different parts of the department to work together to fill critical joint warfighting gaps. And our fiscal year 2023 budget request included more than $130 billion for research, development, testing and evaluation — that's the largest R&D budget number in DOD history." Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin

Secretary of Defense making public speech.

"Last year, the Department launched the Rapid Defense Experimentation Reserve to quickly get promising technology and prototypes into the hands of our warfighters. And we’re working even more closely with trusted partners as we test game-changing technologies together." Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin

Recent Events

RDER Industry Day

Photo credit: JHU APL

How to Participate

***Please note the FY23 RDER Industry Call Letter is currently on hold awaiting passage of a FY23 Defense Appropriations Bill. Once approved, the Industry Call letter will be posted on with additional details and dates. At this time, we do not have an expected timeline for FY23 budget approval.***

Proposal requests will begin in FY23

Proposals from industry and other interested parties will be requested and screened for RDER participation. The call for industry proposals will be posted on

Please use the templates below and submit unclassified proposals to:


If your submission is classified, please email the appropriate RDER inboxes:





Industry White Paper

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Industry Quad Chart

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Rapid Modernization

Pronounced “Raider,” RDER is an initiative that will facilitate more rapid modernization by focusing prototyping and experimentation efforts on multi-Component missions.

  • RDER is a whole-of DoD effort, focused on advanced technologies In order to provide rapid capabilities to address our most difficult military challenges.
  • Executed on a recurring annual basis, the program provides resourcing for promising prototypes to execute advanced experimentation and evaluation and, if warranted, accelerate transition to warfighting capability.
  • Beyond merely evaluating individual capabilities and prototypes, RDER experimentation is focused on providing analysis and evaluation of comprehensive joint and multi-domain kill chains.
  • With oversight through the DoD Innovation Steering Group, each cycle is initiated with an analysis of COCOM priority gaps and promising capability advances seen through, DARPA, Military Labs, Industry and our multi-national allies.
  • On receipt of candidate prototyping opportunities, the selection process is increasingly informed by advanced analytics and computer based M&S to help evaluate proposed technologies/capabilities in a realistic environment.
  • Once programs are selected and funded, R&E maintains oversight of progress on funded service and industry and ally prototypes, and develops advanced experimentation environments to enable evaluation of both prototype and corresponding CONOPS and TTPs.  This is done to provide comprehensive feedback in order to inform rapid acquisition decisions for those activities that show the highest promise in closing warfighter gaps.
  • Experiments will be focused on integrated kill chain execution in as realistic an environment as possible, leveraging advanced constructive, virtual and live capabilities.  When appropriate, RDER will pair compatible technologies in order to demonstrate comprehensive advanced kill chains.
  • While RDER provides a unique/focused capability to DoD, it is an integral component of a broader ecosystem which includes COCOM exercises, Service experiments and lab activities, Industry IRAD and commercial activities.  In order to minimize cost and disruption and accelerate experimentation opportunities, RDER experiments often leverage events executed by these partner activities.
  • As early as prototype selection, transition plans are initiated and tailored for each RDER project.   This is accomplished in partnership with the acquisition community (services, COCOMs, A&S, etc.) to minimize any delays in production or negative impact to existing programs, should a prototype warrant transition.   R&E and A&S have collaborated to evaluate transition of successful RDER prototypes through A&S Competitive Advantage Pathfinders in order to develop a roadmap to successful transition.  The APFIT program, executed by R&E is another new tool that can aid in rapid transition.
  • The combination of comprehensive all service/domain kill chain focus, analysis of potential capabilities across the innovation ecosystem, advanced analytics, experimentation and prototype evaluation, with partnered focus on rapid transition makes RDER a unique and valuable tool achieving an enduring advantage in a rapidly evolving contested landscape.

Capabilities. Alignment. Innovation.

RDER Provides Critical Benefits to the DoD

soldiers looking ahead

01 Accelerate Joint innovation

02 Expand International Partnerships and Multi-lateral engagement

03 Focus Service joint experimentation

04 Quickly demonstrate and assess innovative ideas

05 Provide feedback to future Warfighting concept development


The Secretary of Defense will create a budget  for allocation in the FY 2023 President’s Budget request to expand multi-Component experimentation in a structured, multi-year campaign of learning.

The Secretary will select among proposed experiments based on alignment to Joint missions and potential to yield demonstrable warfighting utility.

Demonstrations and experiments will be conducted at key exercise venues.

Successful demonstrations and experiments will be quickly transitioned to the Components for fielding as new systems or approaches.

Lifecycle costs will be considered for any RDER initiative
that has the potential to result in a new capability.

Ready to participate in RDER?

Current opportunities can be found on



Deputy CTO for Mission Capabilities
The Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301