Finding Technical Reports

About Technical Reports

Technical Reports at the Science and Engineering Library

Other Report Series at UCSD

UCSD Department Reports

How Do I Obtain Technical Reports Not at UCSD?

About Technical Reports

Technical reports are typically used to report progress of research and technical information. The reports usually come from a company, university, or government agency. They are published by noncommercial publishers and are usually part of a numbered series. They can be located in a library catalog by series title or individual report title or a combination of both.

Technical reports in UCSD libraries are listed in the catalog, ROGER, by series for many, and individual report titles for some. Unfortunately, some microfiche reports in the collection are not listed in ROGER. Technical reports may be located at the Science &Engineering Library, the Social Sciences and Humanities Library (usually government documents), or Scripps Institution of Oceanography Library (SIO).

Many reports are now available in full text on the internet. Major technical report collections include:

Catalog of U.S. Publications to find titles and document numbers for government publications. This database includes technical reports and non-report materials back to the late 1800s.

Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC) - Central resource for Department of Defense and government funded technical information.

NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS) -  NASA's current and historical technical literature.

Officeof Scientific & Technical Information (OSTI) – Technical information and reports from the Department of Energy.

International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) – Technical reports about energy research.

Earthquake Engineering Online Archive – Technical information regarding earthquake engineering.

Transportation Research Information Database (TRID)– National transportation technical reports repository.

National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) – Technical reports and information in a variety of scientific fields.

Technical Reports at the Science and Engineering Library

S&E maintains a technical report collection with an emphasis in materials NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and NBS/NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology). Most of these are in microfiche.

When S&E microfiche are cataloged in ROGER by individual titles and series titles, they are shown to have a location code XEX #. The fiche collection is located in the west wing of the main floor of the Geisel Library.


The NASA reports held at UCSD are located in the Technical Report Fiche collection. If the UCSD libraries have received NASA materials in print (books, journals) or CD-ROM they will be cataloged in ROGER. Many NASA publications are available online at the NASA Technical Report Server, NTRS. This database can be searched to identify reports on a particular topic or it can be used to find additional classification numbers for an item.

If a report is not here, a request can be made through ILL or other document delivery services. You will be notified if it is unavailable.

Some of the older microfiche are not sorted by report number. Instead, they are located in the Technical Report Fiche collection by a generic U.S. Government publication number (across departments) that starts with N. With a NASA report number, the NTRS database can be used to identify N-numbers.


NBS and NIST (National TechnicalInformation Service, formerly National Bureau of Standards) publications are all cataloged in ROGER either by series or individual title. The most important report series, NBSIR and NISTIR, are located in the S&E Cataloged Fiche collection under XEX 789. Other NBS/NIST titles should be searched by both individual title and series title in ROGER.

You can also search for NBS/NIST reports in the NIST Library Catalog.

Additional codes and locations for NIST report series at S&E Library:

Title Cataloged Fiche
NBS Building Science
NIST Building Science
XEX 22
NBS Handbook XEX 21
NBS Special Publication
NIST Special Publication
XEX 20
NBS Technical Note
NIST Technical Note
XEX 24

Other Report Series at UCSD

In addition to the NASA and NIST reports, UCSD has significant holdings of the following technical report series:

  • Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) – Energy research from approximately 1975-1987.
  • European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) – From 1979-1987.
  • Stanford Computer Science Reports –From 1978-1993.
  • Artificial Intelligence Reports –From numerous universities and organizations, from the 1960s to 1985.
  • AIAA - International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences

UCSD Department Reports

The library also houses selected UCSD School of Engineering technical reports:

Computer Science and Engineering (CSE),1982-1995, QA75.5 .T43  (online 1999-)

Structural Systems Research Project (SSRP),1986-2000, TA645 .S76

How Do I Obtain Technical Reports Not at UCSD?

  1. UCSD researchers should contact the Interlibrary Loan Department - we can get most U.S. government technical reports for you in either fiche or paper.  We will inform you if the report is unavailable for any reason.
  2. Contact the author of the technical report or the institution.
  3. Some agencies and organizations may have information on their site about obtaining printed copies of their reports.