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Lincoln Laboratory

MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory, in Lexington, Massachusetts, is a federally funded research and development center (FFRDC) that develops advanced technology to address national security needs. Its core competencies are in sensors, information extraction (signal processing), communications, and decision support—all supported by a broad research base in computing and advanced electronics. Other areas of innovative research and development are cybersecurity, biotechnology, novel engineered materials, autonomous systems, and humanitarian assistance and disaster relief systems. Field-testing prototype systems is strongly emphasized. As a Department of Defense FFRDC, the laboratory transitions technologies to both the military services and industry. Approximately 3,650 MIT employees and 486 subcontracted personnel worked at Lincoln Laboratory in fiscal year 2021. 

Ninety percent of Lincoln Laboratory’s funding comes from the US Department of Defense.


Lincoln Laboratory Program Funding, by Mission Area, Fiscal Year 2021*

Mission area % of total funding
Communication Systems 20%
Space Systems and Technology 18%
Air, Missile, and Maritime Defense Technology 15%
Tactical Systems 12%
Advanced Technology 11%
Homeland Protection 9%
Cybersecurity and Information Sciences 6%
Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Systems and Technology 4%
Advanced Research Portfolio 3%
Air Traffic Control 2%
Total 100%

*Lincoln Laboratory’s fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30.