RUSH is Caltech Library's rapid delivery service for articles that the Library does not have immediate electronic access. Articles ordered via RUSH arrive through a link provided in an email.  Typically, access is available within 15 minutes.  However, there could be instances where more time is needed to retreive and deliver a hard-to-find article. While DocuServe provides great access, the RUSH service can provide quicker access for evenings and weekends when DocuServe is not as rapidly available. The service is available to Caltech faculty, students, and staff.  Key points to remember:

  • First Ten Free - The Library offers Caltech faculty, students, and staff 10 free RUSH-delivered articles each academic year.
  • $15 charge after the first ten - Beginning on the eleventh RUSH article request, you will be assessed a $15 charge for use of the service.  On October 1st of each year, the First Ten Free begins again.
  • Limit of $100 on an article - The typical cost to the Library for RUSH articles is approximately $30/article.  However, for articles that cost $100 or more, RUSH service is not available.  You will be notifed of this if it occurs and DocuServe will work to acquire the article through interlibrary loan. 

How do I order an article?

The easiest way to order an article is also the best way to ensure that the Library doesn't have the article digitally available: by searching for the article in your favorite search tool. Look for the CaltechConnect button. If we don't have the article, options for ordering it appear, including the RUSH request option. Clicking "RUSH request" will pre-fill the RUSH form with most of the information needed. 

How long does it take to get a RUSH article?

After submitting your request, you will receive an email with a link to download the article.  On average, the article delivery email will be sent within 15 minutes of your request.  However, there could be instances where more time is needed to retreive and deliver a hard-to-find article.

How do I pay for the service? Do I have to pay up-front?

You do not need to complete payment immediately. The Library's DocuServe team will inovice you for payment of the articles using the information from your DocuServe account.  If you do not have a DocuServe account, you can create one or you can come to the Sherman Fairchild Library and pay by credit card.  Remember: the first ten RUSH requests are free.

What information do I need to complete a RUSH request? What is required?

You will need a DocuServe account, which the Library uses to route your RUSH article most effectively. You can sign up for a DocuServe by using your IMSS credentials at

Create your DocuServe account

  • The first time you log into DocuServe, you will see the new user registration form.
  • Enter all information as requested. 
  • Click "Submit Information"
  • After entering your information, you will need to supply payment information.  We request you include your billing account information (either your UID or a PTA) when registering for the first time.  For most requests, you will not be charged but there are that do require a billing account in order to process (see Items/Price List).
  • You will now be able to make a book or article request through DocuServe.
  • For more information on this, please contact DocuServe (626-395-6437 or docuserve AT

What is DocuServe?

DocuServe utilizes a number of resource sharing partners and vendors to provide access to materials not immediately available through Caltech Library's subscriptions or collections.  Based on our most recent assessment (graph below), for requests submitted during business hours, just over 30% of article requests are fulfilled in less than 12 hours, approximately 75% are fulfilled within 24 hours, and 85% within 48 hours.

The service is free to you for articles and books.  Our partners include hundreds of academic libraries across the United States, Canada, Europe,and Australia. For more information, visit the DocuServe page here.

LOGIN to DocuServe - To make requests, check on, renew, or retrieve electronically delivered requests (requires IMSS authentication).

How do I get my first ten RUSH articles free? 

You simply use the RUSH service to get instant articles. The Library will keep track of your usage and notify you when you have fulfilled your 10 free articles for the year.