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NIST Special Publication Subseries Descriptions

NIST Special Publications include proceedings of conferences sponsored by NIST, NIST annual reports, and other special publications. Within this are SP Subseries that provide detailed specifications in subject areas that are of interest to specific research communities.  Each entry in this list includes the publication date for the first report  or when the series was established, and the date of the final report in the series (if applicable).

SP 250: Calibration Services

July 1986 – present

Publications in the SP 250 subseries provide detailed descriptions of the important features of specific NIST calibration and measurement services. They provide a description of design philosophy and theory; NIST operational procedures; assessment of the measurement uncertainty including random and systematic errors and an error budget; and internal quality control procedures used by NIST. The documents typically present more detail than can be given in NIST calibration reports, or is generally published in articles in scientific journals.

SP 260: Standard Reference Materials

October 1965 – present

The publications in the SP 260 subseries provide information on all phases of the preparation, measurement, and certification of NIST-SRMs. In general, much more detail will be found in these publications than is generally allowed in scientific journal articles. This enables the user to assess the validity and accuracy of the measurement processes employed, to judge the statistical analysis, and to learn details of techniques and methods utilized for work entailing the greatest care and accuracy. The publications also provide additional information not found on the SRM certificate so that new applications in diverse fields will be sought and found. 

SP 300: Precision Measurement and Calibration

February 1969 – November 1973

This subseries brings together monographs, abstracts, and bibliographies by NBS authors dealing with the precision measurement of specific physical quantities and the calibration of the related metrology equipment. The contents have been selected as being useful to the standards laboratories of the United States in tracing to NBS standards the accuracies of measurement needed for research work, factory production, or field evaluation. The ten volumes in the SP 300 subseries serve both as a textbook and as a reference source for scientists and engineers working in standards laboratories.

SP 400: Semiconductor Measurement Technology

July 1973 – February 2001

Publications in this subseries include progress reports on the work of the Semiconductor Technology Program and its cooperative experiments and technical exchanges with the semiconductor industry. While progress briefs are issued through the NISTIR series, the more detailed reports in the SP 400 subseries include state-of-the-art reviews, literature compilations, and summaries of technical efforts conducted within the Semiconductor Technology Program.

SP 480: Law Enforcement Technology

June 1977 – November 1981

Publications in this subseries include law enforcement equipment reports developed by the Law Enforcement Standards Laboratory (LESL, now the Law Enforcement Standards Office) under the sponsorship of the National Institute of Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice (NILECJ). Topics covered in this subseries include protective equipment, communications equipment, security systems, weapons, emergency equipment, investigative aids, vehicles, and clothing. This subseries also include publications by LESL for the Defense Nuclear Agency (DNA, now the Defense Threat Reduction Agency) in support of DNA's physical security program.

SP 500: Computer Systems Technology

January 1977 – present

The documents in the SP 500 subseries include conference and meeting proceedings; best practice recommendations; and reports on test methods, specifications, and data formats from the Information Technology Laboratory (ITL). ITL's Computer Security publications are published in the SP800 subseries.

SP 700: Industrial Measurement Series

November 1984 – March 1986

The SP 700 subseries contains two reports, aimed at those responsible for measurement in industry and represent the strengthening of the ties between NIST staff members and their industrial colleagues. The concept for the series stems from the joint efforts of the National Conference of Standards Laboratories (NCSL) and NIST. Each publication is prepared jointly by a practical specialist and a member of the NBS staff. The goal was to outline the way in which mass measurements can be made to acceptable metrological accuracies.

SP 800: Computer Security Series

December 1990 – present

Publications in the SP800 series present information of interest to the computer security community. The series was established in 1990 to provide a separate identity for information technology security publications. The series reports on ITL's research, guidelines, and outreach efforts in computer security, and its collaborative activities with industry, government, and academic organizations. The series also includes draft guidelines for public comment and ITL annual reports.

SP 823: Integrated Services Digital Network Series

March 1992 – June 1994

The five publications in the SP 823 subseries focus on the conformance test specifications for the various Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN) Protocols. Each publication focuses on a different set of conformance test protocols. These conformance tests were developed and approved by organizations participating in the North American ISDN Users' Forum (NIUF) meetings.

SP 960: NIST Recommended Practice Guides

January 2001 – present

NIST Recommended Practice Guides target specific industrial challenges. They are practical, user-friendly guides that show how to measure properly; what to measure; which technique to use; and how to interpret results. They provide a common source of world-class expertise, enabling users to achieve agreement on measurement issues within their organization and throughout their supply chain. 

SP 1200: Protocols

January 2012 – present

The NIST protocol series includes written procedural methods in the design and implementation of experiments that ensure successful replication of results by others. Publications in the SP1200 subseries may include detailed procedures, lists of required equipment and instruments, information on safety precautions, the calculation of results and reporting standards. 

SP 1500: Working Group Papers

September 2015 – present

Publications in the SP1500 subseries are intended to capture external perspectives related to NIST standards, measurement, and testing-related efforts. These external perspectives can come from industry, academia, government, and others. These reports are intended to document external perspectives and do not represent official NIST positions.

SP 1800: NIST Cybersecurity Practice Guides

2015 – present

Publications in the SP 1800 subseries  complement the SP 800s and target specific cybersecurity challenges in the public and private sectors. The publications are practical, user-friendly guides to facilitate adoption of standards-based approaches to cybersecurity.

SP 1900: Cyber-Physical Systems

November 2016 – present

Publications in the SP 1900 subseries present information of interest to the cyber-physical systems (CPS) community, where cyber-physical systems (CPS) are defined as smart systems that include engineered interacting networks of physical and computational components. The series was established in 2016 by the Smart Grid and Cyber-Physical Systems Program Office of the NIST Engineering Laboratory to provide a separate identity for cyber-physical systems and Internet of Things publications, including those concerned with the foundations of cyber-physical systems, CPS testbed science, and CPS applications, e.g., smart grid, smart cities and intelligent transportation. The series reports on research, guidelines, and outreach efforts in cyber-physical systems, and its collaborative activities with industry, government, and academic organizations. The series also includes draft guidelines for public comment.

SP 2000: Standards Coordination

October 2017 – present

Publications in the SP 2000 subseries provide detailed descriptions of important activities and features related to the use and harmonization of standards and conformity assessment in the United States and globally. The publications include reports, guidelines, and other information resources on key concepts, activities, features, and other specific topics regarding coordination of standards and use of conformity assessment impacting both international and U.S. trade.

SP 2100: Conference Proceedings

March 2019 – present

Publications in the SP 2100 subseries are proceedings from conferences organized predominately by NIST scientific and technical staff. These proceedings are published as a single document that includes all abstracts or extended abstracts accepted by the conference organizers. This publication may include external perspectives from industry, academia, government, and others. The opinions, recommendations, findings, and conclusions in these publications do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of NIST or the United States Government.

SP 2200: Legal Metrology

September 2022 – present

The publications in the SP 2200 subseries provide information on the status and development of U.S. and international legal metrology documentary standards; SI usage, facilitation, and best practices; and technical guidance and training as provided by the Office of Weights and Measures. In general, these legal metrology standards and services describe the regulatory practices of measurements and measuring instruments to achieve uniform application in the sales of commercial products and services. The publications in this subseries also provide additional technical information that is not provided in the NIST Handbook series.

SP 2300: Resilience Indicator Development and Best Practices

May 2023 – present

This technical subseries will be used to document the resilience indicator development methodologies used by the NIST Community Resilience Program and highlight the best practices for the development, selection, testing, and validation of resilience indicators for inclusion in a framework to assess community resilience. The methods used to assess, test, and validate resilience indicators detailed in this special publication subseries are based on the extensive research and experience of NIST researchers.

Created August 23, 2016, Updated February 2, 2024