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


March 4, 2013


Launch of SciTech Connect Consolidates
Information Bridge and Energy Citations Database

The Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) has launched SciTech Connect, a new portal to free, publicly available DOE research and development (R&D) results. SciTech Connect incorporates the contents of two of the most popular core DOE collections and employs an innovative semantic search tool enabling scientists, researchers and the scientifically-attentive public to retrieve more relevant information. OSTI plans to gradually phase out its current DOE Information Bridge and Energy Citations Database products and replace them with the improved search interface of SciTech Connect.

OSTI developed the new resource to help increase access to science, technology and engineering research information from DOE and its predecessor agencies. SciTech Connect represents one of the largest deployments of semantic search by a federal agency to date.

"OSTI historically has been a leader in pioneering the use of new technologies to make more DOE and federal science accessible to more people more conveniently than ever before," said OSTI Director Walter Warnick. "Now, with SciTech Connect, we are expanding deployment of innovative semantic search technology to make DOE R&D results easier to retrieve and thereby better serve our dual core mission – getting DOE results out to the scientific community and beyond, and getting the community's results into DOE."

Now consolidated in SciTech Connect, DOE Information Bridge and Energy Citations Database accounted for approximately half of the 298 million transactions OSTI handled in 2012. SciTech Connect contains all the full-text documents and citations previously found in Information Bridge and Energy Citations Database. Thus, SciTech Connect contains over sixty-five years of energy-related citations created and/or collected by OSTI. There are over 2.5 million citations, including citations to 1.4 million journal articles, 364,000 of which have digital object identifiers (DOIs) linking to full-text articles on publishers' websites. SciTech Connect also has over 313,000 full-text DOE sponsored STI reports; most of these are post-1991, but close to 85,000 of the reports were published prior to 1990.

With the release of SciTech Connect, OSTI is expanding its deployment of semantic search, an innovative technology to radically improve the quality and relevance of search results across the majority of its DOE content. Semantic search is a way to enhance search accuracy contextually. Rather than relying on search algorithms that identify a specific query term, semantic search uses more complex contextual relationships among people, places and things. It is an especially effective search approach when a person truly is researching a topic (rather than trying to navigate to a particular destination). SciTech Connect employs a semantic search technique known as keyword-to-concept mapping. It accepts keyword-based queries and returns concept-mapped queries as in a taxonomy; a search term is mapped to other associated terms, including narrower and related concepts.

SciTech Connect also includes a number of other features, including basic and advanced search; faceting; in-document search; word clouds; and personalization which allows users to save searches, define alerts based on saved searches and create and manage document libraries.SciTech Connect includes technical reports, bibliographic citations, journal articles, conference papers, books, multimedia, and data information sponsored by DOE through a grant, contract, cooperative agreement, or similar type of funding mechanism from the 1940s to today. This collection continues to grow as new scientific and technical information resulting from DOE research becomes available.

Energy Citations Database will no longer be available beginning August 28, 2013. The Information Bridge will no longer be available beginning September 18, 2013. OSTI will work to ensure a smooth transition for patrons as it consolidates these two web-based services into SciTech Connect. OSTI recommends that users bookmark SciTech Connect now and start using it as their primary access point to OSTI's collection of DOE research and development results.

For more information on SciTech Connect and semantic search you may also wish to view the SciTech Connect FAQ page.

OSTI, within the DOE Office of Science, collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored R&D results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

DOE's Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.



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