Terms & Definitions

Applicable regulatory agencies:  The following federal agencies have laws and regulations addressing export controls:

  • U.S. Department of Defense
  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Department of Treasury
  • U.S. Department of Commerce

Certain Countries:  Countries that have been placed under sanction by any of the applicable regulatory agencies.

Commodity:  Article, material or supply, except for software or technology.

Controlled Equipment:  Equipment that is considered by any of the applicable regulatory agencies to be subject to export controls.

Controlled Technical Information:  Technical information that is considered by any of the applicable regulatory agencies to be subject to export controls.

Deemed Exports:  An export of technology or source code (except encryption source code) is “deemed” to take place when it is released to a foreign national within the United States by visual inspection, oral exchange or via training/practice/application.

  • Examples of deemed exports:  Discussions with members of a lab; Meetings of research team; Activities involving foreign graduate students.

Encryption Software:  A computer program that has obscured information to ensure confidentiality of the data used or sent by the application.

Export:  Any oral, written, electronic or visual disclosure, technology, data, equipment, software or services that is transferred abroad.

Export Controls: Regulations that require U.S. government approval before the export or disclosure of certain information, technology or commodities to foreign entities, including person, university or company.  This includes “deemed exports” involving foreign persons in the U.S.

ECCN:  Export Control Classification Number is a numeric designator assigned to goods by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS). Each ECCN consists of five identifiers for category, product group, typed of control, and country group level of control.

Foreign Person:  Generally, any natural person who is not a lawful permanent resident of the United States or not a corporation, association, partnership, trust, society or other entity or group incorporated or organized in the United States.

Fundamental Research:  Basic and applied research in science and engineering where the resulting information is ordinarily published and shared broadly within the scientific community. It is distinguished from proprietary research and from industrial development, design, production, and product utilizations, the results of which ordinarily are restricted for proprietary and/or specific national security reasons. Normally, the results of "fundamental research" are published in scientific literature, thus making it publicly available. Research which is intended for publication, whether it is ever accepted by scientific journals or not, is considered to be "fundamental research." A large segment of academic research is considered "fundamental research." Because any information, technological or otherwise, that is publicly available is not subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) (except for encryption object code and source code in electronic form or media) and thus does not require a license, "fundamental research" is not subject to the EAR and does not require a license.

Technology:  Specific information necessary for the “development” “production” or “use” of a product. The information takes the form of “technical data (may take forms such as blueprints, plans, diagrams, models, formulae, tables, engineering designs, specifications, manuals and instructions written or recorded, or other media or devices such as tape, disk, read only memory” or “technical assistance (instructions, skills training, working knowledge, consulting services)”

Technology required for the development, production, or use of a controlled product remains controlled even when applicable to a product controlled at a lower level. Controlled technology is that which is listed on the Commerce Control List.