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  2. Research Development Test & Evaluation (RDT&E) Funds

Research Development Test & Evaluation (RDT&E) Funds


General Information

Those program costs typically associated with research and development (R&D) efforts, including the development of a new or improved capability to the point where it is appropriate for operational use. These costs are generally funded under the Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E) appropriation.


RDT&E is one of the five major appropriations used by the Department of Defense. RDT&E finances research, development, test and evaluation efforts performed by both contractors and government installations in the development of equipment, material, or computer application software. This includes services (including government civilian salaries), equipment, components, materials, end items and weapons used in such efforts.


RDT&E appropriations are generally used to finance the following efforts: Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Efforts (including the equipment, material or computer application software developed with RDT&E funds); Development Test and Evaluation (DT&E) and Operational Test and Evaluation (OT&E); R&D installations and activities (finances the operation of certain government R&D installations and activities engaged in the conduct of R&D programs, such as laboratories and test ranges).  Further detail on the criteria for funding efforts with RDT&E appropriations can be found in the DoD Financial Management Regulation 7000.14-R, Volume 2A, Chapter 1, paragraph 2.13.


Each RDT&E appropriation is subdivided into eight budget activities (BAs): BA-1 Basic Research, BA-2 Applied Research, BA-3 Advance Technology Development (ATD), BA-4 Advance Component Development and Prototype (ACD&P), BA-5 System Development and Demonstration (SDD), BA-6 RDT&E Management Support, BA-7 Operational System Development, and BA-8 Software and Digital Technology Pilot Programs. More detailed definitions for RDT&E Budget Activities are contained in DoD Financial Management Regulation 7000.14-R, Volume 2B, Chapter 5, paragraph 1.5.