How to format your references using the Atoms citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Atoms. 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
Git, A. Research Tools: A Recipe for Disaster. Nature 2012, 484, 439–440.
A journal article with 2 authors
Cho, S.W.; Chang, H.Y. Genomics: CRISPR Engineering Turns on Genes. Nature 2015, 517, 560–562.
A journal article with 3 authors
Khatiwala, S.; Primeau, F.; Hall, T. Reconstruction of the History of Anthropogenic CO(2) Concentrations in the Ocean. Nature 2009, 462, 346–349.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Kuruvilla, F.G.; Shamji, A.F.; Sternson, S.M.; Hergenrother, P.J.; Schreiber, S.L. Dissecting Glucose Signalling with Diversity-Oriented Synthesis and Small-Molecule Microarrays. Nature 2002, 416, 653–657.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Radzevich, S.P. Geometry of Surfaces; John Wiley & Sons Ltd: Oxford, UK, 2013; ISBN 9781118522707.
An edited book
Moller, F. Modelling Computing Systems: Mathematics for Computer Science; Struth, G., Ed.; Undergraduate Topics in Computer Science; Springer: London, 2013; ISBN 9781848003217.
A chapter in an edited book
Rao, K.R.; Paranjpe, A.C. Mind–Body Complex. In Psychology in the Indian Tradition; Paranjpe, A.C., Ed.; Springer India: New Delhi, 2016; pp. 95–128 ISBN 9788132224396.

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 Atoms.

Blog post
Carpineti, A. The Best Close-Up Picture Of Pluto From New Horizons Yet Available online: (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 Surface Transportation Security: TSA Has Taken Actions to Manage Risk, Improve Coordination, and Measure Performance, but Additional Actions Would Enhance Its Efforts; U.S. Government Printing Office: Washington, DC, 2010;

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Guzman, S. Numerical Investigations of a Pipe Jet with Coil Insert Issuing into a Crossflow. Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach: Long Beach, CA, 2015.

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
Grimes, W. Nina Ponomareva, Winner of Historic Gold, Dies at 87. New York Times 2016, B7.

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 titleAtoms
ISSN (online)2218-2004

Other styles