Copyright protects an original expression of an idea. At the Lab, copyright is used primarily to protect written works such as journal articles, books, software, videos, scientific photos, and engineering drawings. Registering a copyright is not legally necessary because copyright is conveyed automatically upon the completion of a work. However, it is recommended for protection of any work that will receive commercial distribution, as it strengthens copyright protection. The process of obtaining copyright protection is much simpler and less costly than filing a patent. Additional benefits in the U.S. can be created by placing a copyright notice on the work and by registering the work in the U.S. Copyright Office.
All Laboratory-developed software must be deposited with the Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC) operated by DOE's Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. If you have specific questions about how to protect the software you have developed as a LANS employee, please contact the Technology Transfer software team.
If you have written a book and would like to publish it, contact the Legal Counsel-Intellectual Property Office.