The Space Dynamics Laboratory (SDL) is the official University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) for the Missile Defense Agency. Our UARC status places us in a unique position to provide independent assessment, respond quickly to evolving Government requirements, and develop solutions with Government unlimited rights, free of licensing fees.

SDL’s vision is to solve critical national and scientific challenges for a secure and prosperous tomorrow. To achieve this, we translate our customer’s vision into an executable program to ensure success at the mission, system, and component levels. With over sixty years of experience, our experts help define the requirements, design the architecture, develop and test prototypes, and demonstrate that performance meets the program requirements and objectives.

Prior to early 2020, SDL operated as a business unit under the Utah State University Research Foundation, wholly-owned by Utah State University. To more fully align with SDL’s role as a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), the USU Research Foundation merged with SDL and officially changed its name to Utah State University Space Dynamics Laboratory.

SDL is one of 14 University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs) in the nation.


As a UARC, SDL designs, develops, and deploys mission systems in support of science and national security by:

  • Delivering on our commitments
  • Serving as a trusted agent of the Government
  • Providing agile, innovative, and responsive engagement
  • Promoting a culture of rigor, integrity, diversity and inclusion, skill, commitment, passion, and technical expertise
  • Inspiring and training tomorrow’s workforce

Core Areas of Expertise

Ground Stations
Networking & Data Assurance
Satellite Technologies
Science & Engineering
Sensor Systems
Testing & Calibration