How to format your references using the Actuators citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Actuators. 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
Ammann, A.J. US clinical-research system in need of review. Nature 2013, 498, 7.
A journal article with 2 authors
Berndt, A.; Deisseroth, K. OPTOGENETICS. Expanding the optogenetics toolkit. Science 2015, 349, 590–591.
A journal article with 3 authors
de la Mare, W.; Gales, N.; Mangel, M. Science and Law. Applying scientific principles in international law on whaling. Science 2014, 345, 1125–1126.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Sekitani, T.; Yokota, T.; Zschieschang, U.; Klauk, H.; Bauer, S.; Takeuchi, K.; Takamiya, M.; Sakurai, T.; Someya, T. Organic nonvolatile memory transistors for flexible sensor arrays. Science 2009, 326, 1516–1519.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Blackford, R. Freedom of Religion and the Secular State; Wiley-Blackwell: Oxford, UK, 2012; ISBN 9781118153321.
An edited book
Lean Thinking for Healthcare; Wickramasinghe, N., Al-Hakim, L., Gonzalez, C., Tan, J., Eds.; Healthcare Delivery in the Information Age; Springer: New York, NY, 2014; ISBN 9781461480358.
A chapter in an edited book
Ruggeri, T.; Sugiyama, M. RET 14-Field Theory of Polyatomic Gas and Dense Gas. In Rational Extended Thermodynamics beyond the Monatomic Gas; Sugiyama, M., Ed.; Springer International Publishing: Cham, 2015; pp. 109–137 ISBN 9783319133409.

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 Actuators.

Blog post
Andrew, E. Let The People Decide New Place Names On Mercury And Pluto Available online: (accessed on 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 Collection Efforts Not Keeping Pace With Growing Number of Defaulted Student Loans; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1977;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Walker, N.A. Mothers’ description of raising two children with an autism spectrum disorder: A case study. Doctoral dissertation, Capella University: Minneapolis, MN, 2010.

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
Markoff, J. Study Finds Vulnerability in Wide Range of Devices. New York Times 2017, B2.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

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 titleActuators
ISSN (online)2076-0825

Other styles