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How’s Features Help Improve Access to Scientific and Technical Information Across the Federal Government, the gateway to federal government science information and research results, is commemorating 10+ years of service to the American people.    

The portal was launched in December 2002 and is an interagency initiative of 19 U.S. government science organizations within 15 federal agencies.  These agencies form the Alliance, which governs on a collaborative basis. Many of the of the agencies that participate in are members of CENDI, an interagency working group of senior scientific and technical information managers, which provides administrative support and coordination for

 I am very proud  that the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) has played an important role in conceiving, developing and hosting  I am grateful to the many OSTI federal and contractor employees who have helped CENDI and the Alliance make truly “Your Gateway to Federal Science Information.” enables a user to access more than 55 databases and 200 million pages of science information via a single search box.  The content for is contributed by its participating agencies; it places no new burdens on them but offers each agency a government-wide resource where it can display content in which it has already invested.


Related Topics: media, nih, pubmed,


Eleanor Frierson: A Tribute to the Grande Dame of Government Science Information Partnerships


Eleanor Frierson: A Tribute to the Grande Dame of Government Science Information Partnerships

Eleanor Frierson, who passed away in April 2013, was the grande dame of partnerships to improve public access to federal and international science information.  For 10 years, she helped spearhead U.S. interagency efforts to make federal science information more accessible to Americans, playing an absolutely crucial leadership role on the Alliance.  She took  all the way from a nascent concept through to its maturation.  Ms. Frierson also made similar contributions to the international science portal,

She had extensive and diversified experience in information service development and management and had great business acumen and network-building skills.  But Ms. Frierson was much more than a consummate professional; she also was a caring colleague who took great personal interest in her associates.    

Eleanor Frierson was that rare public servant who made a very special mark.  Her legacies continue on today as vital national and international resources. 

* * *

Eleanor Frierson received her B.A. from Oberlin College and her Master’s in Library Science from Syracuse University.  She was a library staff member at Syracuse, the U.S. Department of the Interior and the International Monetary Fund and also served as Chief of the Bureau of Library and Information Services of the International Labour Office in Geneva, Switzerland.

From 2000 until her retirement at the end of 2011, Ms. Frierson was Deputy Director of the National Agricultural Library (NAL), which holds one of the world’s largest collections devoted to agriculture and related sciences.  The NAL is part of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Ms. Frierson was honored as Federal Librarian of the Year for 2010 by the...

Related Topics: Eleanor Frierson, interagency cooperation, intergovernmental cooperation, National Agriculture Library, partnership,, alliance, (WWS)


The Significance of


The Significance of

When I became Director of the DOE’s Office of Scientific and Technical Information in 1997, we had a grand vision for a new era of global discovery. The way we provided access to scientific and technical information could be revolutionized. The internet showed promise, unbelievable promise. How exciting it was to become OSTI’s leader at that point in time.  

Although the development of the Department of Energy’s web-searchable databases greatly enabled our scientific community to access R&D collections, the search technology was inefficient. How could we make the information more easily accessible to the public? Somehow we had to wrap our arms around and embrace new technologies. We had the talent, we had the motivation, and we definitely had the energy. We knew there was a better way to improve the Government’s service to its people.

Other U.S. agencies were struggling with the same challenges. Each agency had amazing scientific collections and databases, but there was no tool for the public to locate and navigate through this disconnected information. The first parallel searching of government databases and websites was developed by OSTI to solve this dilemma. More work had to be done. Somehow, we had to merge scientific disciplines across agency organizational boundaries to provide a useful science resource for America.

During the May 2000 Workshop on a Future Information Infrastructure for the Physical Sciences and the April 2001 Workshop on Strengthening the Public Information Infrastructure for Science, both led by DOE OSTI, an alliance was formed. Participants forged a consensus on how the public infrastructure for science information could be improved and how public access to scientific information of the federal science agencies could be enhanced. It was believed that a comprehensive, well-organized gateway to science information would provide a coherent government R&D presence on the web....

Related Topics: CENDI,, Data.Gov, FEMA,


A big anniversary for an even bigger collaboration!


A big anniversary for an even bigger collaboration!

Ten years ago this month was launched!  The cross-agency portal was created to break down the stovepipes of science information, knowing that it is difficult to know which federal agency holds what information.  Thanks to longtime relationships between the agency senior information managers of CENDI as well as a partnership with, and with the efforts of many, many supporters, a unique and grassroots project was undertaken and still provides an important service today.  A special thanks to our Alliance co-chairs during these years:  Eleanor Frierson, NAL/USDA (retired); Tom Lahr, NBII/USGS (retired); Cindy Etkin, GPO; Tina Gheen, LOC; Annie Simpson, USGS.

Some interesting facts:

  • Number of Websites, 2002 – 90
  • Number of Websites, 2012 – 2100+
  • Number of Large Databases, 2002 – 18
  • Number of Large Databases, 2012 – 59
  • Number of Pages Searched, 2002 – under 45 million
  • Number of Pages Searched, 2012 – 200 million+
  • Number of Participating Agencies, 2002 – 10
  • Number of Participating Agencies, 2012 – 13
  • Number of Page Views, Fiscal Year 2003 – 751,180
  • Number of Page Views, Fiscal Year 2012 – 34 million+

Here is to the next ten years! 

Related Topics: anniversary, CENDI, information, partnership, science,,


The Secret City Is Emerging from Its Past


The Secret City Is Emerging from Its Past

Oak Ridge is rapidly emerging from a secret city into the hub of open science information.  How did this happen? It’s an amazing story. 

In 1942, deep within the quiet farm hills of East Tennessee, a secret city called Oak Ridge was created seemingly overnight.  Approximately 75,000 workers worked tirelessly to refine uranium ore into fissionable material. When the first atomic bomb was dropped in Japan and World War II came to an end, their work for the Manhattan Project was revealed to them and to the world. Their secret is still commemorated today. Oak Ridge, Tennessee has much to be proud of:  Science created its beginning and science continues to be vital to its future.

Just 5 years after the birth of Oak Ridge, the Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) was established to manage the atomic information.  Since then, OSTI has become one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of information about energy science and technology.  It is a little known fact – even around Oak Ridge – that OSTI is mandated by law to maintain and make available science and technical information from research, development, demonstration, and commercial applications activities supported by DOE and its predecessors. OSTI not only collects and preserves research reports from nearby Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Y-12 and labs and weapons facilities across the country, the Office is DOE’s mechanism for spreading the word about the results from its $10 Billion investment in annual research and development. OSTI’s creation 65 years ago signaled a sea change from the Secret City of the Manhattan Project toward openness to share R&D knowledge with the public. 

Since its beginning, OSTI has known that shared knowledge is an enabler of scientific progress. And sharing it does.

I recently spoke to the...

Related Topics: osti,, (WWS)


OSTI by the numbers

by Tim Byrne 02 Nov, 2012 in Products and Content

For those of you who like numbers, I thought I would give you a few numbers about some of OSTI’s databases and search products. 

  • The DOE Information Bridge now has over 300,000 full-text STI reports. While most of these are post 1991, there are over 84,000 reports published prior to 1990.
  • The Energy Citations Database contains over 2.4 million citations and they are not just technical reports. ECD has over 1.4 million journal articles.
  • DOepatents has over 27,000 patents resulting from DOE-sponsored research and development.
  • The E-Print Network searches over 5.5 million e-prints, over 35,000 websites, over 3100 scholarly societies, and over 50 databases.
  • The Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC) distributes over 1300 software packages.
  • ScienceCinema has over 2600 science and technology related videos for your viewing pleasure.
  • searches 55 databases from 13 federal agencies.
  • lets you search 83 collections from over 70 countries in 9 different languages.

Related Topics: DOepatents, E-Print Network (EPN), Energy Citations Database (ECD), Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC), Information Bridge (IB),, ScienceCinema, (WWS)


A Big Year for

This is a big year for, the interagency federal science information portal on the web since 2002.  A major upgrade has just been completed and is available at

  • An updated look is in place, with a slideshow demonstrating some of the major activities of the 13 participating science agencies
  • Multimedia sources are now available and automatically searched 
  • Visualization of related and narrower topics is an optional display, as is the ability to navigate visually
  • A Spanish version,, is linked from
  • New databases and websites have been added
  • Upgraded software enhances the results page

Look for an updated mobile version coming out soon! is a collaboration of 17 organizations within 13 federal agencies, operated by DOE’s Office of Scientific and Technical Information and supported by CENDI, an interagency working group of senior scientific and technical information (STI) managers.


Valerie Allen Operations Manager

Related Topics: CENDI,,, sti


Wind Turbines and Wear and Tear


Wind Turbines and Wear and Tear

A modern wind turbine has more than 8,000 component parts that must withstand the wear and tear of wind stresses. DOE researchers and stakeholders have been working hard to predict and eliminate wind stress related barriers and extend the lifespan of wind turbines.  Working on a paper on this subject? OSTI can save you wear and tear by providing web tools that eliminate the need to search through database after database to find the research you need.  For example, if you use DOE’s Science Accelerator, you could search through 11 DOE databases, and in about 10 seconds or less, retrieve hundreds of documents about the use of simulations to understand wind turbine shear stress.  You could learn about wind turbine gearbox reliability in Energy Citations Database, a database that contains research results submitted by DOE offices, national labs and technology centers and their contractors.  Or you have the option to search the resources of 13 government agencies in to instantly find thousands of records...

Related Topics:, Science Accelerator,, wind

Read more... Mobile: Top Ten in Federal Apps!

4733 Mobile: Top Ten in Federal Apps!

   Hard work and innovation pay off!  Government Computer News (GCN) and Information Week have published their Top Ten Federal mobile apps lists, and was the only interagency mobile application named to both!  Since last year, over 100 federal agencies have established mobile apps in response to a recent White House initiative requiring them to make their services available for mobile use.  GCN evaluated the apps on their usefulness, how helpful they actually were, and also on that intangible “cool factor.”  GCN applauded Mobile’s surprisingly powerful search engine that checks science data from 13 federal agencies and said “It could probably even be a boon to researchers to keep them from duplicating research, and it will certainly help your kids get an A on their science papers.”  Information Week published its “10 Handy Mobile Apps From Uncle Sam” and noted that: “(The) site searches scientific information from more than 50 databases and 2,100 government-affiliated websites. On-the-go science buffs can now access that data trove via a mobile version of the website or a downloadable Android app. Users can get Wikipedia and EurekAlert! results related to their searches.”

Researchers are like the rest of us.  They’re pressed for time, often multi-tasking, and looking for that competitive edge. Discovery can come at any moment and it’s critical to have resources at your fingertips, now more than ever.  That’s one of the reasons that launched its mobile application in September 2011.  And this handy scientific search tool isn’t just for scientists, it’s a great application for teachers preparing lessons or for kids doing...

Related Topics: alerts, apps, mobile,


Preservation Week 2012, April 22-28


Preservation Week 2012, April 22-28

Preservation Week was created in 2010 because there are over 630 million items in collecting institutions such as libraries that require immediate attention and care.

Preserving books, articles and other important information is no easy task because as many as 80% of these institutions have no paid staff dedicated to carry out these activities, and 22% operate without any collections care personnel. Complicating matters, it is estimated that 2.6 billion items are not protected by an emergency plan, which means these resources are in jeopardy should a disaster strike.  One way to protect and preserve these resources, as well as make them more readily available to a wider audience, is digital preservation.

Digital preservation is active management of digital content.  Some items are created in a digital format, but many (and all older documents) have to be converted from their original physical format into a digital format. This takes time and can be costly to do, so many collections remain in non-digital formats.

OSTI is the office that develops and maintains efficient, state-of-the-art tools for access and delivery of research results from the entire Department of Energy. OSTI fulfills Department of Energy responsibilities related to the collection, preservation and dissemination of scientific and technical information emanating from the agency’s R&D activities and makes the information globally available in real time, via multiple formats, in ten languages, mobile – at no cost to the user.  OSTI is dedicated to the principle that to advance science, research must be shared.

For more than 60 years, OSTI has been a pioneer and lead in open government,and has a proven track record in the delivery of groundbreaking information, tools and services.  OSTI’s most recent contributions to...

Related Topics: digitization, DOE Green Energy, preservation,, ScienceCinema,