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
Sarewitz, D. World View: Not by Experts Alone. Nature 2010, 466, 688.
A journal article with 2 authors
Albuschies, J.; Vogel, V. The Role of Filopodia in the Recognition of Nanotopographies. Sci. Rep. 2013, 3, 1658.
A journal article with 3 authors
Szlufarska, I.; Nakano, A.; Vashishta, P. A Crossover in the Mechanical Response of Nanocrystalline Ceramics. Science 2005, 309, 911–914.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Porciello, G.; Holmes, B.S.; Liuzza, M.T.; Crostella, F.; Aglioti, S.M.; Bufalari, I. Interpersonal Multisensory Stimulation Reduces the Overwhelming Distracting Power of Self-Gaze: Psychophysical Evidence for “Engazement.” Sci. Rep. 2014, 4, 6669.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Armaroli, N.; Balzani, V.; Serpone, N. Powering Planet Earth; Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA: Weinheim, Germany, 2013; ISBN 9783527667390.
An edited book
The Evolution of Hominin Diets: Integrating Approaches to the Study of Palaeolithic Subsistence; Hublin, J.-J., Richards, M.P., Eds.; Vertebrate Paleobiology and Paleoanthropology; Springer Netherlands: Dordrecht, 2009; ISBN 9781402096983.
A chapter in an edited book
Atapattu, S.; Tellambura, C.; Jiang, H. Performance Measurements. In Energy Detection for Spectrum Sensing in Cognitive Radio; Tellambura, C., Jiang, H., Eds.; SpringerBriefs in Computer Science; Springer: New York, NY, 2014; pp. 41–62 ISBN 9781493904938.

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. Nanoparticles Give Tumors One-Two Punch By Timing Drug Delivery (accessed on 30 October 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 Labor Market Problems of Teenagers Result Largely From Doing Poorly in School; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 1982;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Burchman, E.K. A Dialogue on Improvisation, Space and Melody: Larry Koonse’s Approach to Improvisation. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach: Long Beach, CA, 2014.

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
Saslow, L. Turning Green, Schools Lead in Solar Energy. New York Times 2007, LI11.

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