Definitions - Research, Development, and R&D Plant
Research, development, and R&D plant include all direct, incidental, or
related costs resulting from, or necessary to, performance of R&D and costs of
R&D plant, defined as follows, regardless of whether the R&D is performed
by a Federal agency (intramurally) or by private individuals and organizations
under grant or contract (extramurally). R&D excludes routine product testing,
quality control, mapping and surveys, collection of general-purpose statistics,
experimental production, and the training of scientific personnel.
- Research is systematic study directed toward fuller scientific
knowledge or understanding of the subject studied. Research is classified as
either basic or applied according to the objectives of the sponsoring agency.
In basic research the objective of the sponsoring agency is to gain
more complete knowledge or understanding of the fundamental aspects of phenomena
and of observable facts, without specific applications toward processes or
products in mind.
In applied research the objective of the sponsoring agency is to
gain knowledge or understanding necessary for determining the means by which a
recognized need may be met.
- Development is systematic use of the knowledge or understanding
gained from research, directed toward the production of useful materials, devices,
systems, or methods, including design and development of prototypes and processes.
It excludes quality control, routine product testing, and production.
- Demonstration activities that are part of R&D (i.e., that are
intended to prove or to test whether a technology or method does in fact work) are
included. Demonstrations intended primarily to make information available about
new technologies or methods are not included.
- R&D plant (R&D facilities and fixed equipment, such as
reactors, wind tunnels, and particle accelerators) includes acquisition of,
construction of, major repairs to, or alterations in structures, works, equipment,
facilities, or land for use in R&D activities at Federal or non-Federal
installations. Excluded from the R&D plant category are expendable or movable
equipment (e.g., spectrometers, microscopes) and office furniture and equipment.
Also excluded are the costs of predesign studies (e.g., those undertaken before
commitment to a specific facility). These excluded costs are reported under total
conduct of research and development. Obligations for foreign R&D plant are
limited to Federal funds for facilities located abroad and used in support of
foreign research and development.