Produced by the Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE), Inspec is the leading English-language bibliographic information service providing access to the world's scientific and technical literature in the following fields.

  • Physics
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electronics
  • Communications
  • Control Engineering
  • Computer Science 
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Information Technology
  • Manufacturing
  • Production Engineering

With Inspec you can uncover research information in specialized areas such as materials science, oceanography, nuclear engineering, geophysics, biomedical engineering, and biophysics.

All Inspec data is supplemented by special subject indexing that aids retrieval and provides valuable subject information about indexed documents.

Database Coverage: 1898 to present


Inspec Archive - Science Abstracts 1898-1968

Inspec now includes the entire collection of Science Abstracts Journals (back to volume one) dating from 1898 to 1968. The Science Abstracts Journals were the precursor to the Inspec database. The subject coverage is:

  • All aspects of physics (originally published as Physics Abstracts).

  • Electrical and electronic engineering (introduced as a separate journal in 1903, and originally published as Electrical and Electronic Abstracts).

  • Computing and control engineering (introduced as a separate journal in 1966, and published initially as Control Abstracts, later renamed to Computer and Control Abstracts).

The Inspec Archive - Science Abstracts contains more than 873,700 records. These records:

  • Contain tables, graphs and figures from original source documents. They also include longer abstracts than the 100-200 word abstracts typical today. These vary in length from half a page to several pages, including diagrams and complex mathematical proofs, because printed copies of source documents were more difficult to obtain.

  • Retain the original value-added indexing and classifications, and include enhancements in the form of the nearest equivalent current Inspec Thesaurus Terms and Inspec Classification Codes.

  • Cover conference proceedings, journals, reports, and dissertations.


About the All Databases Search

The All Databases search function allows you to search all products in your institution's subscription at the same time. It is available to institutions that subscribe to two or more products.

If your institution subscribes to only one product (for example, Web of Science Core Collection), then you will not have an All Databases option. In this instance, since you have only one product to search, the system takes you directly to that product's Search page.

To access the All Databases search option, go to the drop-down menu to the right of the Search label in the banner region.


Document Types

For a list of document types, go to our listing of document types.


Database Records

Full records include complete bibliographic details and author abstracts.


Timespan Options

Timespan options allow you to specify the time period that you wish to search.


About Controlled Terms

Subject specialists at IET assign controlled terms from the Inspec Thesaurus that add value to the database and aid in retrieval. See also Inspec Thesaurus Details for more information.