How to format your references using the Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics. 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
Gough D 2012 Astronomy. How oblate is the Sun? Science 337 1611–2
A journal article with 2 authors
MacCoun R and Perlmutter S 2015 Blind analysis: Hide results to seek the truth Nature 526 187–9
A journal article with 3 authors
Meindl J D, Chen Q and Davis J A 2001 Limits on silicon nanoelectronics for terascale integration Science 293 2044–9
A journal article with 99 or more authors
Arnold P L, Patel D, Wilson C and Love J B 2008 Reduction and selective oxo group silylation of the uranyl dication Nature 451 315–7

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Tunley M, Whittaker A, Gee J and Button M 2015 The Accredited Counter Fraud Specialist Handbook (Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd)
An edited book
Hirsch F 2011 Peacocks and Associated Martingales, with Explicit Constructions ed C Profeta, B Roynette and M Yor (Milano: Springer)
A chapter in an edited book
Zehnder A T and Zella N 2015 Fracture Surface Transition for Notched Bars in Torsion Fracture, Fatigue, Failure, and Damage Evolution, Volume 5: Proceedings of the 2014 Annual Conference on Experimental and Applied Mechanics Conference Proceedings of the Society for Experimental Mechanics Series ed J Carroll and S Daly (Cham: Springer International Publishing) pp 35–9

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 Research in Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Blog post
Luntz S 2015 How Many Arms Does Our Galaxy Have? IFLScience


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 2003 Joint Strike Fighter Acquisition: Cooperative Program Needs Greater Oversight to Ensure Goals Are Met (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office)

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Ciolek R 2017 A Mixed Method Study on the Missouri Beginning Teachers Assistance Program and Teacher Retention in Saint Louis School Districts Doctoral dissertation ( St. Charles, MO: Lindenwood University)

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
Wagner J 2016 Mets’ Young Starters Come at Bargain Price in 2017 New York Times D3

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 titleResearch in Astronomy and Astrophysics
AbbreviationRes. Astron. Astrophys.
ISSN (print)1674-4527
ScopeSpace and Planetary Science
Astronomy and Astrophysics

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