How to format your references using the Photonics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for 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
Gibney, E. How to Tame the Flood of Literature. Nature 2014, 513, 129–130.
A journal article with 2 authors
Hidaka, H.; Yoneda, S. Radioactive Cs Capture in the Early Solar System. Sci. Rep. 2013, 3, 1330.
A journal article with 3 authors
Lourens, L.J.; Wehausen, R.; Brumsack, H.J. Geological Constraints on Tidal Dissipation and Dynamical Ellipticity of the Earth over the Past Three Million Years. Nature 2001, 409, 1029–1033.
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Matheus, P.; Burns, J.; Weinstock, J.; Hofreiter, M. Pleistocene Brown Bears in the Mid-Continent of North America. Science 2004, 306, 1150.

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Hamad, W.Y. Cellulose Nanocrystals; John Wiley & Sons, Ltd: Chichester, UK, 2017; ISBN 9781118675601.
An edited book
Geostatistical Applications for Precision Agriculture; Oliver, M.A., Ed.; Springer Netherlands: Dordrecht, 2010; ISBN 9789048191321.
A chapter in an edited book
Gambarelli, S.; Mulliez, E.; Fontecave, M. Iron–Sulfur Clusters in “Radical SAM” Enzymes: Spectroscopy and Coordination. In Metals in Biology: Applications of High-Resolution EPR to Metalloenzymes; Hanson, G., Berliner, L., Eds.; Biological Magnetic Resonance; Springer: New York, NY, 2010; pp. 53–82 ISBN 9781441911384.

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 Photonics.

Blog post
Hamilton, K. How The Snake Got Its Extra-Long Body 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 Space Science: Causes and Impacts of Cutbacks to NASA’s Outer Solar System Exploration Missions; 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
Kelly, E.J. What Experiences Create and Nurture a Love of Science? Doctoral dissertation, California State University, Long Beach: Long Beach, CA, 2016.

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
Feeney, K. Burgers With Attitude. New York Times 2010, NJ9.

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 titlePhotonics
ISSN (online)2304-6732

Other styles