Frequently Asked Questions

What is Export Control? 

The traditional export is the “transfer” of goods to individuals and organizations outside of the US.  Exports, however, also include transfers of technology and technological information from a U.S. person to a Foreign National through verbal communications (in person or over the phone); electronic communications, through the exchange of written documents (ex. in person, over e-mail, or by mail); and transfer of computer software. Theses transfer can happen either within the United Stated or abroad. However, not all technology transfers are controlled by the United States government. The initial determination of whether a technology is controlled is critical in determining whether the activity requires a license. The primary regulatory resources for export control are the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and International Traffic in Arms regulations (ITAR). If any controlled information, technology, software, or equipment will be transferred to another party overseas or to a foreign party in the United States, a license must be obtained prior to the transfer unless a valid licensing exception or exclusion applies. The Office of Research Integrity can provide assistance in determining if an activity requires a license and assist in the application process, if necessary. 

What is a “deemed export”?

A deemed export is the transfer of controlled technology or source code to a foreign national within the United States. 

Who are foreign nationals? 

A foreign national is someone who is not a U.S. citizen, is not a green card holder, and has not been granted asylum. Students with a J-1 visa are foreign nationals.   

What is technology? 

Technology is specific information necessary for the “development,” "production," or "use" of a product. 

What is “use”?

 In order for technology or source code knowledge to meet the definition of “use” under the EAR the technical knowledge must enable the user to operate, install (including on-site installation), maintenance, repair, overhaul and refurbishing.  Generally, if the technology does not enable improvement of equipment design (i.e., “development” technology) or replication of the item (i.e., “production” technology) then the information then it unlikely to be controlled. 

How do export controls relate to equipment in my lab? 

Anyone in your department, regardless of citizenship, can operate lab equipment without triggering export controls. However, if the equipment is taken out of the lab and is in full possession by foreign national then an export has occurred and export controls are triggered. Export controls are also triggered if a foreign national is not only operating equipment, but, also, engaging in activities related to installation (including on-site installation), maintenance (checking), repair, overhaul and refurbishing of the equipment. Please see the following checklist for additional guidance.  

Export Control and Lab Equipment Checklist:

1. Is the technology you are using in your research publicly available? 

a. Has the technology been patented or published? 

b. Will you publish the technology developed during your research?

If no to any of the above, please contact the export control officer.  

  2.   Do any international students or faculty have access to lab equipment that is not publicly available? If yes, please contact the export control officer.   

3. Does the technology you are developing have the capacity to be used for destructive purposes? If yes, please contact the export control officer. 

How does BSU’s contract with sponsor relate to export controls? 

Projects that are not classified, do not have military application, do not limit participation by foreign nationals, or include publication restrictions do not trigger export controls. Publication restrictions may be the most common trigger for export controls. Publication restrictions can exist in a number of different forms.  These restrictions typically will include language limiting foreign national access to proprietary information, requiring certain approvals from the sponsor before publication is allowed, or requiring researchers to postpone publication of the research that is being funded. 

What technologies are covered under the EAR and ITAR? 

The EAR covers the following categories:

* Nuclear Materials, Facilities, and Equipment
* Chemicals, Microorganisms, and Toxins
* Materials Processing
* Electronics Design, Development, and Production
* Computers
* Telecommunications
* Information Security and Encryption
* Sensors and Lasers
* Navigation and Avionics
* Marine

* Aerospace and Propulsion

The ITAR covers the following categories: 

* Firearms, Close Assault Weapons, and Combat Shotguns
* Guns and Armament
* Ammunition/Ordnance
* Launch Vehicles, Guided Missiles, Ballistic Missiles, Rockets, Torpedoes, Bombs, and Mines
* Explosives and Energetic Materials, Propellants, Incendiary Agents, and Their Constituents
* Surface Vessels of War and Special Naval Equipment
* Ground Vehicles
* Aircraft and Related Articles
* Military Training Equipment and Training
* Personal Protective Equipment
* Military Electronics

* Fire Control, Range Finder, Optical and Guidance and Control Equipment

* Materials and Miscellaneous Articles