The U.S. Missile Defense Agency awarded General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems Group an $8.9 million contract covering phase 1 of its Low Power Laser Demonstrator.

Under the deal, General Atomics will “perform the next step for the [demonstrator] effort that addresses laser power and aperture size by integrating and testing a low-power laser on an unmanned aerial vehicle.”

The agency is using a Predator B aircraft from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc.

Work will be performed in San Diego and Poway, and continue through July 31.

The Missile Defense Agency of Albuquerque, New Mexico, awarded the deal, which the Pentagon announced Nov. 6.