U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Federated Search

OSTI ensures global access to DOE research results and brings the world's research to DOE.


To find government research results, first you need to find the right discovery tools.


If you’ve been searching for science information using popular search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and MSN, you may be missing out on the research you need.


That’s because popular search engines generally cannot search in the deep web where most scientific research results are found.

Discovery Tools


The deep web is huge - by some estimates, the deep web is more than 500 times the size of the surface web where popular search engines "crawl"  .

To get to the deep web, you need discovery tools, such as The National Library of Energy (NLEBeta), (gateway to information from across the Department of Energy) Science.gov, (U.S. science information), and WorldWideScience.org. (global science information). With these tools you can find the richest scientific content – the results of billions of dollars worth of government-sponsored scientific research results. In one query, you can search multiple databases at one time, sort through the information in ways that are useful to you, and rapidly return relevant results to your desktop.


When you enter a query in basic search, the query is sent to every individual data resource (database, collection, and portal) searched by the discovery tool. The individual data resources send back a list of results from the search query. Results are then ranked in relevance order. You can review the results and navigate to the host site of a particular result for more detailed information.


This process allows some key advantages when compared with existing crawler-based search engines. No requirements or burdens are placed on owners of the individual data sources, other than handling increased traffic. Federated searches are inherently as current as the individual data sources, as they are searched in real time.





National Library of Energy Search this gateway to information across DOE in four broad topic areas: science and R&D; energy and technology for industry and homeowners; energy market information and analysis; and nuclear security and environmental management.  NLEBeta makes it possible to search DOE databases, collections, and website information, a total of more than 25 million pages, via a single query.  More information is available at National Library of EnergyBeta.


Science.gov OSTI hosts this interagency collaboration of 17 U.S. government science organizations within 15 federal agencies.  Launched in 2002, Science.gov is a gateway to over 2,200 scientific websites, 60 scientific databases, and 200 million pages of science information that can be searched with just one query.  Content includes text-based and multimedia information, as well as research data.  More information is available at Science.gov.  Science.gov websites enhance the deep web content by providing significant breadth and currency as an “interagency database” included in the federated search. Science.gov is the U.S. contribution to WorldWideScience.org.






WorldWideScience OSTI hosts this international gateway to approximately 100 national science collections from more than 70 participating nations.  This resource offers simultaneous, real-time searching of the most current information from around the world in fields such as energy, medicine, agriculture, environment, and basic sciences.  Multilingual translation capabilities are available for ten languages: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.  Content includes text-based and multimedia information, as well as research data.  More information is available at WorldWideScience.org.



Last updated on Tuesday 19 May 2015