Preparing your source files for journal articles

The guidelines below provide the essential information you need to prepare your article source files (i.e. the files that you use to create your complete PDF).

Naming your files

Please name all your files according to the following guidelines:


Use only characters from the set a to z, A to Z, 0 to 9 and underscore (_)


Do not use spaces in file names


Include an extension to indicate the file type (for example, .doc, .txt, .eps, etc)


Do not use any accented characters (for example, à, ê, ñ, ö, ý, etc) because these can cause difficulties when processing your files.

In addition to the above points, please give figure files names indicating the numbers of the figures they contain; for example, figure1.eps, figure2.tif, figure2a.gif, etc. If a figure file contains a figure with multiple parts, for example figure 2(a) to 2(e), give it a name such as figure2a_2e.jpg, and so forth.

Article text files

TeX and LaTeX

The text of articles may be submitted in any common variant of TeX including LaTeX2e, REVTeX, AmSTeX, AmSLaTeX and plain TeX (including pdfTeX/pdfLaTeX).

A LaTeX2e class file is available to help authors prepare articles for consideration by IOP Journals, should you wish to use it. The files are available in zipped format and Unix tar gzipped format:



Note that there is an incompatibility between amsmath.sty and iopart.cls which cannot be completely worked around. If your article relies on commands in amsmath.sty that are not available in iopart.cls, you may wish to consider using a different class file.

Microsoft Word

  • Articles can be prepared using Microsoft Word for Windows or Mac
  • Fonts used should be restricted to the standard font families (Times, Helvetica, Courier or Symbol)
  • If special symbols are needed (e.g. Greek characters, accented characters or mathematical symbols), these should be typed using the appropriate TrueType font. Do not use the Symbol facility on the ‘Insert’ menu as this often results in font conversion problems
  • Equations must be prepared using Microsoft Word Equation Editor or the full commercial MathType package.

Figure files

For articles prepared using LaTeX2e, please make sure that your figures are all supplied as vector Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) and linked to your main TeX files using appropriate figure inclusion commands such as \includegraphics. For articles prepared using Word, where possible please also supply all figures as separate graphics files (in addition to being embedded in the text). Our preferred graphics format is EPS. These files can be used directly to give high-quality results, and file sizes are small in comparison with most bitmap forms.

Vector formats

The advantage of vector graphics is that they give the best possible quality at all output resolutions.

In order to get the best possible results, please note the following important points:

  • Fonts used should be restricted to the standard font families (Times, Helvetica, Courier or Symbol)
  • Certain proprietary vector graphics formats such as Origin, Kaleidagraph, Cricket Graph and Gnu Plot should not be sent in their native format. If you do use these applications to create your figures, please export them as EPS.

Archive and compress your files

You may combine all your files (article text, graphics files and, if applicable, the readme.txt file) into a single compressed archive file for ease of handling and to save you time and space. Please archive your files into a zip file. To upload this file type, choose the ‘source files’ designation when you submit. If you have any difficulty archiving or submitting files, please contact us for assistance.