Search Help

General Help

The Keyword field can be searched by itself from the RIP Home page or Additional Search Filters form, or in combination with any/all other available text fields and limits in the Additional Search Filters.

Searching the Keyword field from either the home page or in the Additional Search Filters includes all of the indexed fields in RIP: title, project description, notes, index terms, subject areas, contract or grant numbers, record accession numbers, project managers, principal investigators, sponsor organizations, managing organizations, and performing organizations.

These rules apply to any plain text field on the Additional Search Filters form. Plain text fields include: Keywords; Title; Contract or Grant Numbers; Organization; Person.

  • Entering terms in multiple fields searches for all terms in the query.
  • For an exact match, enclose a phrase within quotes:
  • For a wild-card search, use an asterisk (*) after a partial word.
  • RIP will perform limited automatic stem searching when using quoted phrase searches.
  • For a Boolean search, use OR, AND, or NOT between words or phrases. See more information about using Boolean logic.
  • A nested search may be performed by enclosing term(s) within parentheses.
  • Stop Words: The following words are ignored in any search or quoted phrase in order to reduce the size of the search index and increase search speed: about, also, an, and, another, any, are, as, at, be, because, been, being, between, both, but, by, came, can, come, could, did, do, does, each, else, for, from, get, got, has, had, he, have, her, here, him, himself, his, how, if, in, into, is, it, like, make, many, me, might, more, most, much, must, my, never, now, of, on, only, or, other, our, out, over, same, see, should, since, so, some, still, such, take, than, that, the, their, them, then, there, these, they, this, those, to, too, want, was, we, well, were, what, when, where, which, while, who, will, with, would, your.
  • Click the Filters button to see all available search fields.
  • When submitting searches, click the button after entering all search criteria, or hit the Enter button on your keyboard.
  • Add more criteria to narrow search results. Delete criteria to broaden search results.
  • Remember that entering terms in multiple fields searches for all terms in the query.
  • Click the button to begin a new search.
  • Click the History button to rerun a previous search.
  • In your History table, use the Modify link to create a new search using the saved search as a starting point.

The Search History feature enables users to combine their previous searches using Boolean operators to create more precise results. Users can view their search history by clicking on History in the toolbar or in mobile mode. History will be accessible through the ellipsis on the right side of the toolbar.

The 50 most recent searches will be listed in the table and will be available unless you use the Clear History button at the bottom of the table.

  • Click View to revisit results.
  • Click Modify to create a new search using the saved search as a starting point.
  • Users can combine sets in the History table using AND or OR Boolean logic.
  • Alternatively, users can manually key in set numbers which allows for use of parentheses and the NOT Boolean operator.
  • Note that links to combined sets cannot be shared as these are derived from the web browser storage on your computer.

RIP displays 25 records per page by default. Use the Records Per Page selections at the very bottom of the Additional Search Filters to decrease or increase the number of results displayed per page. Records can be displayed in increments of 10, 25, 50 or 100. After selecting the desired number of records, click the button to save the setting for your current session.

To navigate more than one page of results, use the arrow buttons at the top and bottom of each page of results. Key in a number to go to a particular page of results.

Note that Sort Order can be changed to Descending or Ascending.

Records can also be sorted by:

  • Start Date - Start Date is the date that a project starts.
  • End Date - Date that the project was completed.
  • Created Date – Date that a record was added to RIP.
  • Title – The title of the project.
  • Only 2,000 records at a time can be Printed/Emailed/Saved to your file.
  • Use the checkboxes next to results to add records to your Marked Records list.
  • Users may also mark all records on a page, or all records in a result list. These selections are available at the top of each page of results:

Mark: Page · All · None

  • Click None to remove records marked from that particular list of results.
  • Records added to your Marked Records list will remain in the list until you click Clear.


7 Marked Records

  • Print
  • Email
  • Save
  • Clear
  • Print marked records in various formats.
  • Email marked records to yourself or another person.
  • Save marked records for other uses including importing bibliographic software like RefWorks, EndNote, or Zotero.
  • Clear your marked record collection.


Plain text format for a reference citation.
Citation & Abstract
Plain text format for a reference citation which also includes the record abstract or description.
Used to import into bibliographic software like RefWorks, EndNote, or Zotero.
File format that separates values by commas (comma-delimited). Can be viewed in text and spreadsheet editors.
Microsoft Word
Full record output in Microsoft Word document format. Records are separated by page breaks.
Structured output of full record data in XML for use in data transfer or import.
Full record output as a web page for print or display in a browser.

Sort by

While exporting, saving, or emailing records, the Marked Records list can be sorted by:

  • Date published or Start date of project; newest first or oldest first
  • Date the record was created, i.e. the date the record was published in TRID; newest first or oldest first
  • Alphabetically by title; A-Z or Z-A

After running a search from the RIP home page or from Advanced Search, the resulting URL in your web browser’s address bar can be copied and pasted to an email, document or website. The URL will run the same RIP search when clicked.

  • Searches can be further modified to narrow or broaden results.
  • URLs resulting from sets combined in the Search History feature will not work.

Available Search Fields

This field searches all of the indexed fields in RIP which include title, project description, notes, index terms, subject areas, contract numbers, project managers, principal investigators, sponsor organizations, managing organizations, and performing organizations.

Enter one or more terms from a title or the exact title to search.

  • This field searches project titles.

This field can be a very effective way to narrow or focus your searches. If you are interested in runway pavements, selecting Aviation will effectively exclude results about highway pavements, for example. Most records in RIP have at least one mode, and at least one function.

  • If you select multiple subject areas, you can switch between OR/AND Boolean logic for your selections by switching the toggle button directly below the field between: Match Any Subject Listed or Match All Subjects Listed.
  • Click in the field and use the down arrow or scroll button on your mouse to select your subject(s). On a smartphone, you’ll see a standard scroll wheel from which you can easily select multiple terms. You may also start typing to filter the list, then use the arrow keys or highlight with the cursor to select a subject area. Multiple subject areas may be selected in the same manner.

There are 37 Subject Areas available:

  • 11 modes: Aviation; Freight Transportation; Highways; Marine Transportation; Motor Carriers; Passenger Transportation; Pedestrians and Bicyclists; Pipelines; Public Transportation; Railroads; Transportation (General)
  • 26 functions: Administration and Management; Bridges and other Structures; Construction; Data and Information Technology; Design; Economics; Education and Training; Energy; Environment; Finance; Geotechnology; History; Hydraulics and Hydrology; Law; Maintenance and Preservation; Materials; Operations and Traffic Management; Pavements; Planning and Forecasting; Policy; Research; Safety and Human Factors; Security and Emergencies; Society; Terminals and Facilities; Vehicles and Equipment

Many projects include unique identifiers which are frequently alphanumeric, containing some combination of numbers and letters.

Enter complete or partial terms to search for contract or grant numbers.Add an asterisk to the end of a partial number to search for numbers starting with that string . For example, “69A355*” will retrieve “69A3551847103” and “69A3551747115.” However, it will not retrieve “69A-3-55” because of the dashes.

To search for multiple terms, use OR to separate search terms.

Many projects move through a regular lifecycle, from proposal to completion/termination. The six status categories in RIP are listed in alphabetical order:

Ongoing research project
Project has been finished and closed
Project temporarily suspended due to a funding or other interruption
Sponsor has approved/allocated funding for the project, but the research is not yet underway
The project is being considered, but has not yet been funded and/or approved
Project was terminated before completion

Click the checkbox before any Status, or choose . The default is all Status categories.

A source is the organization or type of organization that provided the records to the RIP Database. If no selection is marked, all Sources are included in your search by default. One or more Sources can be selected to limit your search, and the default Boolean operator between each selection will be 'OR.'

Sources include:

  • TRB – limits to TRB projects, including those managed by the Cooperative Research Programs.
  • UTC – (University Transportation Center) limits to projects from the University Transportation Centers (UTC) Program, which is funded by the US Department of Transportation.
  • USDOT – (US Federal Department of Transportation) limits to projects funded, sponsored or conducted by the US Department of Transportation or one of its agencies.
  • STATEDOT – (US State Departments of Transportation) limits to projects funded, sponsored or conducted by state-level departments of transportation in the United States.

Use the Location filter to limit a search by the state in which a Source Agency, Sponsoring Organization, Managing Organization or Performing Organization is based. Click the field and scroll to select one or more states. Start typing to filter the list, then use the cursor to make a selection. Multiple states may be selected.

Index terms are terms from the Transportation Research Thesaurus (TRT). Begin typing an index term. Matching terms will appear in a drop-down list from which you can select terms. Best matches will appear first. Results will include non-preferred terms that have been assigned to the preferred TRT term.

More than one term may be selected. The default Boolean operator is OR. You can switch between OR/AND Boolean logic for your selections by switching the toggle button directly below the field between: Match Any Term Listed or Match All Terms Listed.

For more complex searches use the Search History feature to combine those searches using the AND or NOT Boolean operators.

This field searches all Index Terms including:

  • Transportation Research Thesaurus (TRT) terms
  • Geographic Terms (A specific place or geographic feature described in the project)
  • Identifier Terms (A specific entity, structure or organization that is a important element of the project)

It also allows a user to employ Boolean (AND, OR, NOT) logic. See Advanced Search Tips above for examples.

Enter a partial or complete organization name to search among sponsor organizations, managing organizations, performing organizations, or source agency. You may need to use Boolean logic.

  • For example, will return records for projects in which Maine Department of Transportation is a sponsor organization, managing organization, performing organization or source agency.
  • will also bring back records in which Maine Department of Transportation is a sponsor/performing/managing/source organization, but also records with University of Maine.

Enter a person's last/family name and first/given name or initial to search among project managers and principal investigators. You can use wildcards and Boolean logic to search across all matching names, including first names.

Note that a query for will return results for 'Smith, Robert,' 'Smith, Richard' and authors 'Smith and Robert' or other last/family and first/given names that begin with the letter R. It will not return results for 'Smith, Bob'. Please keep in mind that due to differences in indexing practices among the various contributors to the RIP Database, some records contain only first/given initials rather than full names.

The default is set to search all dates. To narrow your search, select one of the preset buttons: , , , or use to specify a date range.

The default is set to search on the date that a project started or will start.

Select Record Created Date to search by date on which records were initially entered into the Database.

Select Project End Date to search by date on which the project was completed or is expected to be completed.