Anduril Industries last Friday said it raised $1.5 billion in a new funding round that will be used to accelerate its research and development into new defense and security technologies and allow it to continue scaling the business to meet the needs of the Defense Department and U.S. allies and partners.

The Series E funding round values the defense technology company at nearly $8.5 billion, nearly double the valuation in June 2021. The company had 700 employees at the start of the year and now has more than 1,100.

“Anduril has made incredible progress delivering on its mission to transform U.S. and allied national security capabilities with advanced technology,” Antonio Gracias, CEO and chief investment partner at Valor Equity Partners

, said in a statement. “Anduril has a massive opportunity to create even more impact for the U.S. and its allies, and we grow more confident in its mission with every opportunity to invest.”

Valor, a long-time investor in Anduril, led the funding round. Other participants included Founders Fund, Andreesen Horowitz, General Catalyst, 8VC, Lux Capital, Thrive Capital, DFJ Growth, Elad Gil, Lacy Groom, Human Capital, Marlinspike, WCM Investment Management, MVP Ventures, Lightspeed Ventures and US Innovative Technology Fund.

Anduril is known for applying artificial intelligence and machine learning, and autonomy to its technologies. The company provides Customs and Border Protection with the Autonomous Surveillance Towers for border security and within the last year won a potential 10-year, 967 million contract to integrate counter-unmanned aircraft system (C-UAS) for the U.S. Special Operations Command. The company’s sensor and UAS technology was also recently recommended by a joint DoD office for used by the military services and combatant commands.

Anduril also recently launched a loitering munition, the ALTIUS 600M, with twice the loitering time and range of current offerings, an expeditionary command and control platform, and a mobile, AI-based sensor platform to autonomously detect, track and identify objects. The company also offers autonomous underwater vehicles.

Anduril has also opened shop in Australia and has a $100 million contract with the Royal Australian Navy to design, develop and manufacture an extra-large autonomous undersea vehicle.