The goal of the proposed work is the development of a portable and efficient pulsed laser system for LIDAR and ranging applications, which make use of the latest developments in fiber optic technology. Even though there have been significant advances in fiber lasers, there is still a need for development of a reliable fiber laser system generating nanosecond and sub nanosecond (100 ps ? 5 ns) pulses with enough energy for ranging applications. The potential applications of such a laser would be LIDAR systems that are flown in smaller UAV platforms where size and efficiency are key requirements. The proposed laser system follows the classical arrangement of a Master Oscillator Power Amplifier (MOPA). The master oscillator consists of a microchip laser which is a commercially off the shelf (COTS) component. The power amplifier will be constructed using photonic crystal fiber (PCF). Due to the many developments over the last few years in the area of fiber optic technologies and components, Phase I work will start with an in-depth evaluation of all available technologies, which will lead to the design and development of a space-worthy high power nanosecond laser.