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Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics

About Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics


Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics covers the study of atoms, ions, molecules and clusters, and their structure and interactions with particles, photons or fields. The journal also publishes articles dealing with those aspects of spectroscopy, quantum optics and non-linear optics, laser physics, astrophysics, plasma physics, chemical physics, optical cooling and trapping and other investigations where the objects of study are the elementary atomic, ionic or molecular properties of processes.

Papers are published under the following subject sections:


Atomic structure, properties, and dynamics
Executive Editorial Board Member: Nikolay Vitanov

The Atomic structure, properties, and dynamics section of Journal of Physics B contains results from studies of individual atoms or atomic ions. The properties under study can be those of atoms or atomic ions not interacting with any field (energies, transition frequencies, oscillator strengths, lifetimes, etc.) or those that depend on the presence of external fields (polarizabilities, electric or magnetic moments, state mixing in strong electric, magnetic or microwave fields, etc.), excluding ultrafast, high-field, or X-ray physics. Time-dependent properties (e.g. electronic wave packets) with or without external fields are also appropriate.


Molecular, Chemical and Cluster Physics
Executive Editorial Board Member: Albert Stolow

The Molecular, Chemical and Cluster Physics section of Journal of Physics B aims to provide a venue for the exchange of ideas in the structure, spectroscopy, dynamics, collisions, dissociation and control of molecules and clusters. We aim to publish manuscripts which address current problems in both experimental and theoretical Molecular, Chemical and Cluster Physics. Our tutorials and perspectives articles are directed at the quantum mechanical description of these subjects, broadly interpreted, including aspects which address underlying issues in translating science into technology. Areas of particular interest include ab initio quantum dynamics, non-adiabatic electronic-nuclear coupling, photoionization and photodissocation, and time- and frequency-resolved linear and non-linear spectroscopies (including ultrafast) ranging broadly from the X-ray to the RF regions. Contributions of a technical nature as well as fundamental research are welcome.


Atomic and Molecular Collisions
Executive Editorial Board Member: James Sullivan

The Atomic and Molecular Collisions section of Journal of Physics B publishes research performed on collision processes at low energy, and on the atomic and molecular scale. This section covers the study of collision dynamics for a wide range of processes from low to intermediate energies and over atomic and molecular length scales. New and original research will be considered addressing a broad range of collision processes and phenomena, including: electron and positron collisions from atoms, molecules and clusters, as well as other interactions between matter and antimatter particles; ion, cluster, atom and molecule collisions with various targets; atom, ion and molecule collisions with surfaces; and photon impact processes, including excitation, ionisation, fragmentation and strong field interactions.


Cold Matter
Executive Editorial Board Member: Olivier Dulieu and Li You

The Cold Quantum Matter section of Journal of Physics B aims to reflect the rapid developments of ideas and knowledge in the vivid research field of atomic and molecular physics at cold and ultracold temperature. In this regime, dilute samples of atoms and molecules exhibit unique quantum features at the edge between few-body and many-body physics. We publish papers devoted to methods for cooling and trapping neutral or charged atoms and molecules, to approaches deciphering their ultracold dynamics and chemistry also in the presence of external electromagnetic fields, to ways for achieving quantum degeneracy and new quantum phases, and to applications of such systems for quantum simulation, quantum technologies, high-precision measurements, tests of fundamental theories. Papers addressing experimental, technical, theoretical, numerical issues are all welcome.


Optical and Laser Physics
Executive Editorial Board Member: Caterina Vozzi

The Optical and Laser Physics section of Journal of Physics B focuses on reporting results inherent to optical techniques and laser sources relevant for atomic, molecular and optical physics. Both basic research contributions and more technological or applied papers are published. In particular, the reporting of open issues and possible solutions fits within this section, to the extent that innovative approaches and new directions in spectroscopy, non-linear optics, laser physics and all aspects of optics and lasers technology related to the study of interactions with matter are concerned. This includes also the development of large-scale facilities such as synchrotrons and free electron lasers. Contributions coming from a broad research community, ranging from academic research to industry, are welcome, with the objective of enhancing the exchange of information and the promotion of technology transfer.


Quantum Technologies
Executive Editorial Board Member: Kenji Ohmori

The Quantum Technologies section of Journal of Physics B aims to provide a venue for the exchange of ideas in application-driven quantum science. We welcome papers from researchers from all types of science and engineering institutions, including papers from industry. We publish manuscripts that elucidate current problems, describe possible solutions and present important progress in application-driven quantum science. Our tutorials and perspectives articles are directed at clarifying application areas and the advances made in quantum technologies, broadly interpreted, including those that address underlying issues in transitioning science into technology. Areas of particular interest are quantum technologies directed at communications, computing, sensing and standards, but authors whose papers address new directions are also encouraged to submit their work. Contributions of a technical nature as well as basic research are of interest. We make substantial efforts to facilitate information exchange between researchers in different areas of work, such as academia and industry.


Ultrafast, High-field, and X-ray Physics
Executive Editorial Board Member: Kaoru Yamanouchi and Manchikanti Krishnamurthy

The Ultrafast, High-Field and X-ray Physics section of Journal of Physics B aims to provide a venue for the exchange of ideas in ultrafast dynamics of atoms, molecules, and clusters induced by ultrashort laser pulses at THz to X-ray wavelengths, the ultrafast response of atoms, molecules and clusters to an intense laser field, and ultrafast changes of the geometrical structure of molecules and clusters by time-resolved electron and X-ray diffraction. Special emphasis is placed on electron motion in the attosecond time domain and the subsequent responses of nuclei in molecules and clusters in the femtosecond time domain, as well as on electron scattering and rescattering phenomena in an ultrashort intense laser field. We welcome papers on the development of new measurement techniques combined with advanced light sources, such as high-order harmonics, attosecond pulses, and ultrashort X-ray pulses, as well as on the development of new theory to describe the nonlinear response of multi-electron systems interacting with an intense laser field.


Astrophysics and Plasma Physics
Executive Editorial Board Member: James Colgan

The Astrophysics and Plasma Physics section of Journal of Physics B provides a venue for the reporting of progress in the field of atomic processes in plasmas. We welcome papers that provide atomic and molecular data (including atomic and molecular structure and collisional data) for use in astrophysical and plasma physics modeling; papers that report studies of spectroscopy of a range of plasmas (including laser-produced and magnetically-confined plasmas); studies of ultracold and strongly-coupled plasmas, and papers that discuss collisional-radiative modeling that describes non-equilibrium plasma processes. Applications of plasma modeling are widespread and are found in astrophysics, laser physics, and in industrial contexts. We also encourage submissions focusing on experimental studies ranging from small-scale studies (such as EBITs and table-top lasers) to powerful light sources (such as XFELs).

Why should you publish in Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics?

  • High standards: articles are rigorously peer reviewed by IOP Publishing’s global network of expert reviewers, supported by our top-level editorial board.
  • Fast publication: we are committed to providing you with a fast, professional service to ensure rapid first decision, acceptance and publication. Once accepted, your article will be accessible to readers within 24 hours and will include a citable DOI.
  • Open access: Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics offers authors the option to publish fully open access.
  • Transfer opportunities: as well as accepting direct submissions, the journal also offers you a quick and easy solution to transfer your manuscript from another IOP Publishing journal if it does not fit that journal’s scope or significance criteria. Articles are transferred along with peer review reports to save time and avoid duplication of work for reviewers.
  • Society owned: IOP Publishing is a leading society publisher of advanced physics research. Any profits generated by IOP Publishing are invested in the Institute of Physics, helping to support research, education and outreach around the world.

Article types

Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics welcomes submissions of the following article types:

Research papers: reports of original research work; normally not more than 8500 words (10 journal pages).

Letters: short, high-impact and outstanding research not more than 4500 words (5–6 journal pages). A short statement outlining why your article merits high-priority publication is required on submission.

Special issue articles: invited articles, which will form a special collection of papers on a specific theme.

Topical reviews: topical reviews present a snapshot of recent progress in a particular field. Written by leading researchers in their respective fields, these articles present the background to a particular field and the current state of the art. Topical reviews are normally commissioned by the Editorial Board although we are happy to receive suggestions for future topics.

Tutorials: 12 000 to 18 000 word long articles of a pedagogical nature. Tutorials will guide newcomers into rapidly developing fields where textbooks are still unavailable and allow interested researchers from more distant fields to gain an insight into what they see as a new subject. We publish two types of Tutorial in the journal: a PhD Tutorial is written by a junior member of the community and based on his/her excellent PhD thesis; a regular Tutorial is written by a more established scientist, who is essentially asked to prepare his/her article on the basis of his/her outstanding lecture series given at a graduate Winter/Summer School. Both types of Tutorial are normally commissioned by the Editorial Board although we are happy to receive suggestions for future topics.

Invited papers: 9000 to 14 000 word long ‘composite’ articles, i.e. mixing review material and new, unpublished research. Invited papers will deal with breaking, emerging topics. They will be more narrowly focused, hence shorter than regular topical reviews, but they will be of the same quality standards as a ‘Habilitation’. Invited papers are normally commissioned by the Editorial Board.

Roadmap articles: collaborative, forward-looking articles, co-authored by expert researchers in a field. Roadmaps provide an overview on the status, challenges and emerging technologies of each author’s particular area of interest.

Perspectives: A perspective article is written from a personal standpoint and expresses the opinions and judgments of an eminent author on a particular topic. It may comment on a particular article as a starting point. Perspectives are normally invited by the Editorial Board.

Comments: Comment on, or criticism of, work previously published in Journal of Physics B. These are usually published with an associated Reply.

Peer review

The following summary describes the peer review process for Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics, using the ANSI/NISO Standard Terminology for Peer Review:

  • Identity transparency: single-anonymous, double-anonymous (author choice)
  • Reviewer interacts with: Editor
  • Review information published: review reports (author and reviewer opt in), author/editor communication, reviewer identities (reviewer opt in)

Our Publishing Support website provides more information on our reviewing process as well as checklists in both English and Chinese language to help authors prepare their manuscripts for submission.

If an article is not accepted for publication, we may offer the author the opportunity to transfer their submission to other suitable journals we publish.

Inclusivity and diversity

IOP Publishing recognises that there are inequalities within the scientific publishing and research ecosystems. We are committed to a progressive approach to inclusivity and diversity, and are working hard to eliminate discrimination to foster an equitable and welcoming publishing environment for all.

IOP Publishing follows Guidelines on Inclusive Language and Images in Scholarly Communication to ensure that journal articles use bias-free and culturally sensitive communication. We ask authors to please follow these guidelines in their manuscript submissions.

More information about our work on inclusivity is available on our Open Physics hub.


Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics maintains the highest standards of publication and research ethics and is a member of the Committee for Publication Ethics (COPE). Authors are expected to comply with IOP Publishing’s Ethical Policy.

Research data

Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics has adopted IOP Publishing’s research data policy. Please check that your article complies with the policy before submission.

Please note that this policy requires authors to include a data availability statement in their article.

For any questions about the policy please contact the journal.

Many research funders now require authors to make all data related to their research available in an online repository. Please refer to the policy for further information about research data, data repositories and data citation.

Open access

Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics is a hybrid open access journal. Authors have the option to pay an article publication charge (APC) to publish their article on a gold open access basis under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence. Articles published on a gold open access basis are freely available to everyone to read and reuse immediately upon publication, provided the terms of the licence are followed and clear attribution to the author is given.

Alternatively authors who do not select the gold open access option can choose a green open access route to publication.

For more information on IOP Publishing’s open access policies please see our Open access page. For our author rights policies please see our Author rights page.

Publication charges

Publication on a subscription-access basis is free of charge.

Authors have the option to pay the following article publication charge (APC) to publish their article on an open access basis under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence.

Article publication charge* £2295 €2635 $3165
Reduced article publication charge* for Group B countries** £500 €575 $675
Reduced article publication charge for Group A countries** £0 €0 $0

*excluding VAT where applicable

**eligibility criteria can be found here

APCs only apply to articles accepted for publication; there are no submission charges.

There are no other charges for publishing in Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics.

Transformative Agreements

Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics is included in our transformative agreements which allow authors from some institutions to publish open access without paying an APC.

Find out if you’re covered by an agreement

If you are covered by an agreement, use our author guide to help you submit your paper.

Countries where we have transformative agreements include:
Austria, Canada, Croatia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Germany, Poland, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, Sweden and Switzerland.

Paying for open access

Various discounts, waivers and funding arrangements are available to support our authors. Visit our Paying for open access page for further details.


Abstracting and indexing services

We work with our authors to help make their work as easy to discover as possible. Journal of Physics B: Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics is currently included in the following abstracting and discovery services:

  • Baidu Scholar
  • Chemical Abstracts Service
  • Chimica
  • CNKI
  • EBSCO Academic Search Alumni Edition
  • EBSCO Academic Search Complete
  • EBSCO Academic Search Elite
  • EBSCO Academic Search Premier
  • EBSCO Academic Search Ultimate
  • EBSCO Engineering Source
  • EBSCO STM Source
  • Ei Compendex
  • INIS (International Nuclear Information System)
  • Inspec
  • J-Gate
  • JST
  • Mass Spectroscopy Bulletin
  • MyScienceWork
  • NASA Astrophysics Data System
  • Naver Academic
  • R Discovery
  • Scilit
  • Scopus
  • Semantic Scholar
  • VINITI Abstracts Journal (Referativnyi Zhurnal)
  • Wanfang Data
  • Web of Science (Science Citation Index Expanded, Current Contents Physical, Chemical & Earth Sciences, Essential Science Indicators)
  • WTI AG
  • x-mol

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