The definition of the technical report may vary from one institution to another. Here is the one chosen by the Polytechnique Montréal Library:
The technical report is a specialized, clear and structured written presentation which presents observations, data and facts collected during an experiment, a scientific investigation or a technical project.
Of variable length and flexible form, this document is aimed at a specialized readership generally coming from industrial, academic and government circles.
Considered gray literature, the technical report is generally not published by a commercial publisher and is not subject to peer review. It is often published informally by the organization that commissioned the report and / or the organization to which the author is affiliated.
The Library has been publishing technical reports in electronic format only since 2004. These reports are made available through PolyPublie, Polytechnique Montréal's instutitionnal repository.
Authors are asked to provide a brief abstract of their report to make retrieval easier.
Publication delays vary from one to eight weeks after all report components are received.