How to format your references using the ACS Photonics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for ACS Photonics. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Wakeham, B. UK Physics Gets a Health Check. Nature 2008, 455 (7213), 592.
A journal article with 2 authors
Neuman, Y.; Cohen, Y. A Vectorial Semantics Approach to Personality Assessment. Sci. Rep. 2014, 4, 4761.
A journal article with 3 authors
Falkowski, P. G.; Fenchel, T.; Delong, E. F. The Microbial Engines That Drive Earth’s Biogeochemical Cycles. Science 2008, 320 (5879), 1034–1039.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Mold, M.; Eriksson, H.; Siesjö, P.; Darabi, A.; Shardlow, E.; Exley, C. Unequivocal Identification of Intracellular Aluminium Adjuvant in a Monocytic THP-1 Cell Line. Sci. Rep. 2014, 4, 6287.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
Kramer-Moore, D.; Moore, M. Destructive Myths in Family Therapy; Wiley-Blackwell: Oxford, UK, 2012.
An edited book
Exploring the Theory, Pedagogy and Practice of Networked Learning; Dirckinck-Holmfeld, L., Hodgson, V., McConnell, D., Eds.; Springer: New York, NY, 2012.
A chapter in an edited book
Quillen, E.; Glahn, D.; Almasy, L. The Strategy and Utility of the Endophenotype Approach to Neurobehavioral Function. In Neurophenotypes: Advancing Psychiatry and Neuropsychology in the “OMICS” Era; Jagaroo, V., Santangelo, S. L., Eds.; Innovations in Cognitive Neuroscience; Springer US: Boston, MA, 2016; pp 81–102.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for ACS Photonics.

Blog post
Hale, T. Cassini Captures Gorgeous Shots Of Two Moons Peeking Through Saturn’s Rings (accessed Oct 30, 2018).


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. Systemwide Education Reform: Federal Leadership Could Facilitate District-Level Efforts; T-HRD-93-20; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1993.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Odom, S. A. Electronic Health Records: Overcoming Obstacles to Improve Acceptance and Utilization for Mental Health Clinicians. Doctoral dissertation, Capella University: Minneapolis, MN, 2017.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Gordon, M. R.; Schmitt, E. Wrestling With North Korea, Trump Finds Perilous Options. New York Times. August 11, 2017, p A1.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in superscript:

This sentence cites one reference 1.
This sentence cites two references 1,2.
This sentence cites four references 1–4.

About the journal

Full journal titleACS Photonics
AbbreviationACS Photonics
ISSN (online)2330-4022

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