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Library FAQs

Is the NIST Research Library open to the public?
Can I borrow or obtain copies of materials from the NIST Research Library?

Do I need reprint permission to use material from a NIST publication?
How can I identify and find NIST Publications?
Are librarians available to assist me?
How do I contact a librarian for help?
I have visited the NIST Museum & History Program website; can I visit the physical museum?
Can I visit the NIST Archives?

 Is the NIST Research Library open to the public?

The NIST campus is not open to the public. Access to the NIST campus to use the Research Library is granted on a case by case basis. Provide your name, address, phone number, citizenship, position, affiliation, detailed reason for access request, and desired access date and time to: library [at] nist.gov.

Can I borrow or obtain copies of materials from the NIST Research Library?

The NIST Research Library accepts requests for copies of NIST publications only. Email the request to: library [at] nist.gov and include the publication title, author(s), year, pages, and any other information about the NIST publication.

Documents are usually sent as an email attachment at no cost. Generally, we will fulfill your request within 1-2 days business days. However, lengthy documents or large volumes of requests may take several days to process. Alternatively, many NIST publications are available from the National Technical Information Service (NTIS).

The NIST Research Library does not honor interlibrary loan lending requests for copies of non-NIST publications, articles, or other materials.

Do I need reprint permission to use material from a NIST publication?

In general, publications of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, as publications of the Federal government, are in the public domain and not subject to copyright in the United States. Permission to reprint or copy from them is therefore not required. The original source should be credited. The credit line should include this recommended text: Reprinted courtesy of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, U.S. Department of Commerce. Not copyrightable in the United States.
Public domain official writing that is published in copyrighted books and periodicals may be reproduced in whole or in part without copyright limitations; however, the source should be credited.

How can I identify and find NIST Publications?

Information on how to identify and locate NIST publications can be found on the NIST Publications page.

Are librarians available to assist me?

The NIST Research Library's primary responsibility is to serve NIST researchers and staff, but we will provide limited reference assistance to the public on topics related to NIST or NIST research.

How do I contact a librarian for help?

You may contact a librarian for help via phone (301-975-3052) or by email (library [at] nist.gov). Librarians are on duty 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday except Federal holidays.

I have visited the NIST Museum & History program website. Can I visit the physical museum?  

The NIST campus is not open to the public. Access to the NIST campus to use the Museum is granted on a case by case basis. Provide your name, address, phone number, citizenship, position, affiliation, detailed reason for access request, and desired access date and time to: library [at] nist.gov.

Alternatively, we may be able to assist you with NIST Museum inquiries without the need to visit the Museum. Send your Museum questions to library [at] nist.gov.

Can I visit the NIST Archives?

The NIST campus is not open to the public. Access to the NIST campus to use the Archives is granted on a case by case basis. Provide your name, address, phone number, citizenship, position, affiliation, detailed reason for access request, and desired access date and time to: library [at] nist.gov.

Alternatively, we may be able to assist you with NIST Archives inquiries without the need to visit the Archives. Send your Archives questions to library [at] nist.gov.

Created February 7, 2011, Updated July 9, 2019