Technical reports describe the process, progress, or results of technical or scientific research. They include in-depth experimental details, data, and results. They serve as a report of accountability to the funding organizations, usually the federal government or private industry.
The primary function of a technical report is usually to give an official statement of research findings to sponsors or employers, such as the federal government. When the government performs or sponsors research, they may require as a part of the contract that reports of the research be published as a way to maintain public disclosure. Technical reports are a type of publication commonly referred to as grey literature, which is not peer-reviewed and intended for rapid dissemination of technical information before it is presented at conferences or published in scientific journals.