General Lab Information

Foreign Visitors

Non-US visitors to the Laboratory must be screened to ensure that controlled technologies or technical data are not inadvertently released to foreign nationals that may require an export authorization.

Researchers working on export-controlled projects are responsible for ensuring that export-controlled technology or technical data are not released to visiting foreign nationals during their visits.

What is export-controlled Technology or Technical Data?

  • “Information…required for the design, development, production, manufacture, assembly, operation, repair, testing, maintenance, or modification of defense articles.
    Specific information necessary for the "development," "production," or "use" of a product on the Commerce Control List (CCL) or United States Munitions List (USML).
  • It does NOT include information concerning “general scientific, mathematical or engineering principles”.
  • It does NOT include information already in the public domain, such as that available through unrestricted publications, unlimited distribution at conferences, or libraries.
  • It does NOT include fundamental research “where the resulting information is ordinarily published and shared broadly in the scientific community”. However, equipment used to produce the fundamental research may nonetheless be controlled.

Technology is “released” when:

  • It is available to foreign nationals for visual inspection (such as reading technical specifications, plans, blueprints, etc.).
  • It is exchanged verbally, including by correspondence.
  • It is made available by practice or application under the guidance of persons with knowledge of the technology.


The person in charge of the visit should ensure that non-US visitors are escorted when visiting facilities with controlled technologies, and are not given keys/keycards, combinations, passwords, or other access to research facilities in which export-controlled research is being performed, or where export-controlled items or technical data are kept. Escorts are responsible for ensuring that no technical data or controlled equipment are present when non-US visitors are in the area.


It may be necessary to restrict non-US visitors from participating in activities that would expose them to export-controlled technology or technical data (or obtain an export license for them in advance). This may mean that you need to have secondary screening for certain meetings, briefings, or demonstrations.

If you have questions, please contact the Export Control Office at