During the past several years there has been significant progress in the technology validation, fabrication, and high-power testing of uncooled optics for high-energy chemical lasers. When compared to the past practice of using cooled, molybdenum components, uncooled optics offer the potential for lower component weights, significantly reduced fabrication cost and schedule, and improved performance due to the elimination of the coolant flow-induced jitter. An initial effort, performed under the Uncooled Optics Scaleability Demonstration program, focused on the development and production of large diameter (17-inch) turning flats. In January 1992, the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) initiated Special Study 007, Resonator Optics Materials Assessment (ROMA), to extend this technology to high-power chemical laser resonator optics. The objective of this study was to demonstrate the critical techniques and processes required to fabricate resonator optics for the Star LITE Space-Based Laser (SBL) Advanced Technology Demonstrator and, ultimately, to an operational space-based laser weapon system. This paper provides a background of the technology evolution, an overview of the substrate material selection process, and the development of processes used to fabricate large-diameter uncooled optics. It also provides the framework for four additional papers presented in this session on uncooled optics technology development.