Infrared detector development and characterization at NASA Langley Research Center will be reviewed. These detectors were intended for ground, airborne, and space borne remote sensing applications. Discussion will be focused on recently developed single-element infrared detector and future development of near-infrared focal plane arrays (FPA). The FPA will be applied to next generation space-based instruments. These activities are based on phototransistor and avalanche photodiode technologies, which offer high internal gain and relatively low noise-equivalent-power. These novel devices will improve the sensitivity of active remote sensing instruments while eliminating the need for a high power laser transmitter.