Advanced Research Projects Agency


Advanced Research Projects Agency

ARPA stands for Advanced Research Projects Agency and is the research and development agency of the United States Department of Defense responsible for developing emerging technologies for use by the military. ARPA was originally known as the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET), which was created in 1969 to connect computers at research institutions across the country.

What does Advanced Research Projects Agency mean?

Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA) is a United States government agency responsible for funding advanced research and development in science and technology. It is part of the Department of Defense and was founded in 1958 in the wake of the Soviet Union’s successful launch of Sputnik, the world’s first artificial satellite. ARPA’s mission is to “pioneer revolutionary concepts and develop prototypes that advance DoD’s mission” by funding and monitoring research projects that have the potential to create transformative technologies for the military and other government agencies.

ARPA operates by issuing broad funding calls known as Broad Agency Announcements (BAAs), which invite proposals from universities, corporations, and non-profit organizations. BAAs typically outline the specific technical areas that ARPA is interested in funding, and proposals are evaluated based on their scientific merit, potential impact, and feasibility. ARPA also provides funding for individual scientists and engineers through its “young faculty awards” and “early career research awards” programs.


ARPA is widely credited with playing a key role in the development of many of the technologies that we take for granted today, including the internet, GPS, and stealth technology. The agency has also funded research in areas such as artificial intelligence, robotics, Cybersecurity, and Biotechnology.

ARPA’s research projects are often highly speculative and risky, but they also have the potential to be extremely disruptive. For example, ARPA’s research on self-driving cars has the potential to revolutionize the transportation industry, while its research on artificial intelligence could Lead to the development of new technologies that can solve complex problems that are currently beyond the reach of human intelligence.


ARPA was founded in 1958 as the Advanced Research Projects Agency. In 1972, the agency was renamed the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). In 2019, DARPA was renamed ARPA-H, which stands for Advanced Research Projects Agency for High-Risk Research.

The first director of ARPA was Roy Johnson, a physicist who had previously served as the scientific director of the Air Force’s Cambridge Research Laboratories. Johnson was instrumental in establishing ARPA’s mission and its unique funding model, which allows the agency to invest in high-risk, long-term research projects that are not likely to be funded by traditional sources.

Over the years, ARPA has been responsible for funding some of the most groundbreaking scientific and technological advances in history. In addition to the internet, GPS, and stealth technology, ARPA has also funded research that led to the development of the ARPANET, the precursor to the internet; the laser; and the Global Positioning System (GPS).