Europhysics Letters

Europhysics Letters EPL is published under the scientific policy and control of the EPS by EDP Sciences, IOP Publishing and SIF for a partnership of 17 European physical societies (the EPL Association) ISSN: 1286-4854 (ONLINE) ISSN: 0295-5075 (PRINT) Journal metadata

Sample articles
  • Aims and scope

    General physics - physics of elementary particles and fields - nuclear physics - atomic, molecular and optical physics - classical areas of phenomenology - physics of gases, plasmas and electrical discharges - condensed matter - cross-disciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology.

    Letters submitted to EPL should contain new results, ideas, concepts, experimental methods, theoretical treatments, including those with application potential and be of broad interest and importance to one or several sections of the physics community. The presentation should satisfy the specialist, yet remain understandable to the researchers in other fields through a suitable, clearly written introduction and conclusion (if appropriate).

    EPL also publishes Comments on Letters previously published in the Journal.

  • Profile

    Europhysics Letters was founded in 1986 by the European Physical Society (EPS), the Société Française de Physique (SFP) and its subsidiary EDP Sciences, the Società Italiana di Fisica (SIF) and the Institute of Physics (IOP). The new journal incorporated Lettere al Nuovo Cimento and Journal de Physique Lettres and has been published by EPS, EDP Sciences and SIF until 2006.

    EPL is now published under the scientific policy and control of the EPS by EDP Sciences, IOP Publishing and SIF for a partnership of 17 European physical societies (the EPL Association).

    The EPL Association is managed by a Board of Directors together with the Business Manager and Executive Editor.
    The refereeing procedure is handled by the Editorial Board and the Editorial Office (with the support of the Advisory Board).


    EPL is owned now by 17 National Physical Societies/Institutes represented by the Board of Directors.

    Category A 
    The European Physical Society 
    The French Physical Society 
    The Italian Physical Society 
    The Institute of Physics (UK)

    Category B 
    The Austrian Physical Society 
    The German Physical Society 
    The Hungarian Physical Society 
    Institute "Ruder Boskovic" 
    The Netherlands Physical Society 
    The Portuguese Physical Society 
    Pool of Scandinavian Physical Societies 
    • Danish Physical Society 
    • Finnish Physical Society 
    • Icelandic Physical Society 
    • Norwegian Physical Society 
    • Swedish Physical Society 
    The Swiss Physical Society 
    The Turkish Physical Society

    Associate Members 

    Institute "Josef Stefan" 
    Spanish Royal Society of Physics

  • Indexing

    EPL is abstracted in, and indexed by, these services:

    Cambridge Scientific Abstracts
    Chemical Abstracts
    Elsevier Bibliographic Databases
    Ei Compendex®
    ISI Science Citation Index®
    NASA Astrophysics Data System

  • Editors

    EPL is run by scientists for the international scientific community. The Editorial Board, which includes the Editor-in-Chief and a team of truly international Co-Editors, is responsible for overseeing the review process, selecting referees and making publication decision for every manuscript.

    Editor-in-Chief :
    Prof. Michael Schreiber


    Prof. Yoichi Ando
    Prof. Stefano Atzeni
    Prof. Dionisio Bazeia
    Prof. David Bensimon
    Prof. Bernard Castaing
    Prof. Antonio H. Castro Neto
    Prof. Che Ting Chan
    Prof. Marek Cieplak
    Prof. Lesley F. Cohen
    Prof. Russell P. Cowburn
    Prof. Wolfgang Drexler
    Prof. Rosario Fazio
    Prof. Jörg Fink
    Prof. Vladimir E. Fortov
    Prof. Elvira M.C. Fortunato
    Prof. Shlomo Havlin
    Dr. Chin-Kun Hu
    Prof. Ferenc Iglói
    Prof. Plamen Ch. Ivanov
    Dr. Peter M. Jacobs
    Prof. Anders Kastberg
    Prof. Satyendra Kumar
    Prof. Ying-Cheng Lai
    Prof. Astrid Lambrecht
    Prof. Alfred Laubereau
    Prof. Maciej Lewenstein
    Prof. Alan J. McKane
    Prof. Frédéric Mila
    Prof. Tai-Kai Ng
    Prof. Pablo Ordejon
    Prof. David Quéré
    Prof. Michael G. Ramsey
    Dr. Rudolf A. Roemer
    Prof. Misao Sasaki
    Prof. Sergey Savrasov
    Prof. Claus M. Schneider
    Prof. James F. Scott
    Prof. Udo Seifert
    Prof. Gora Shlyapnikov
    Dr. Laurent Simon
    Prof. Peter Sollich
    Prof. Sauro Succi
    Prof. Rudolf A. Treumann
    Prof. Daniël Vanmaekelbergh
    Prof. Luis Viña
    Dr. Rüdiger Voss
    Prof. David Wands
    Prof. Howard R. Wilson
    Prof. Kaoru Yamanouchi
    Prof. Vladimir G. Zelevinsky
    Prof. Dieter Zeppenfeld

  • Guide to authors

    EPL publishes original, high-quality Letters in all areas of physics, ranging from condensed matter topics and interdisciplinary research to astrophysics, geophysics, plasma and fusion sciences, including those with application potential. Articles must contain sufficient argument and supporting information to satisfy workers in the field, and must also be of interest and relevance to wider sections of the physics community. In order to comply with general interest, special care should be directed to the introduction and conclusions sections of the articles. Both should be clearly written in a style comprehensible to the general physics community.

    In preparing their article authors should follow these guidelines as closely as possible. This will ensure an immediate start of the refereeing procedure and will speed up the production procedure, in case of acceptance.

    In order to maintain our standard, also for articles published from LaTeX, we reserve the right to make small alterations and put the article in EPL house style.

    The maximum length for manuscripts is 6 printed journal pages (in A4 2 column format), including the title, the main text, formulae and figures, captions and tables as they appear in EPL.

    1. Title page

    The first page must include:

    • Title: only the initial word should be capitalized. The title should attract attention and be clear enough for non-specialists.

    • Short title: if the title exceeds 80 printed characters (spaces included), authors should provide a shortened title for running heads.

    • Author name(s): initial(s) of the author(s) first name(s) followed by surname(s). Please specify in your submission if you want the first name to appear in full.

    • Affiliation(s): if there are more than one, please clearly identify each of them by superscript numbers to each author name accordingly.

    • PACS numbers: a maximum of three PACS (Physics and Astronomy Classification Scheme) numbers should be given in order of importance. The complete updated list is available from the AIP at:

    • Abstract: the abstract should be a single paragraph (with no figure, table, equation or reference quotations) summarising concisely the aim of your work, not exceeding 800 characters in length. The abstract should attract attention and be clear enough for non-specialists. Note: there are no abstracts in Comments and Replies.

    LaTeX hint

    • title, author, etc. should exclusively be formatted by means of the corresponding high-level macros \title, \author, etc. Avoid \bf, \centerline etc.

    2. Main text

    The main text should contain a clearly written introduction underlining the novelty of the paper, a conclusion, and may include formulae, figures, tables and captions.

    • Language: British spelling is preferred (i.e. colour, standardise, metre, etc.) but whatever spelling you use (either British English or American English), please remain consistent throughout.

    The words: figure(s), equation(s) and reference(s) shall be abbreviated as fig. (figs.), eq. (eqs.), ref. (refs.) unless they are the first word of a sentence. The word 'table' is written in full.

    • Fonts and style: Items that should be typeset in roman: units; chemical formulae; the differential d and the mathematical functions, cos, sin, exp, det, ker, ln; tr, Tr (for traces); Im and Re (for imaginary and real); imaginary unit i; Euler constant e.

    Items that should appear in italics: mathematical symbols; the contractions (i.e., e.g., et al.); foreign words or expressions.

    Items that should appear in boldface: vectors and tensors (when it is essential to distinguish between them, sans serif bold may be used for tensors)

    • Formulae: Note that very long or complex formulae might not fit the one column width. If you are not using the macros, always indicate where to cut them. Exponential expressions are clearer in the notation exp(...), especially the long ones or those containing subscripts or superscripts; for simple expressions we accept also ex.

    It is important to distinguish between ln=loge and log=log10.

    For single fractions in the text, use the solidus (/) instead of fraction. Use parentheses whenever necessary to avoid ambiguity, for example to distinguish between 1/(n-1) (= )

    and 1/n-1 (= -1).

    For common units, use the standard SI abbreviations; unusual units may be written in full at least when mentioned for the first time.

    Formulae are to be identified by whole numbers in round brackets.

    Authors should be aware that Word and electronic formats other than TeX/LaTeX will be converted to LaTeX; this means that all formatting commands, all special characters and all equations will need to be retyped.

    LaTeX hint:

    • it is vital not to redefine formatting commands such as \section or bypass them with low-level macros such as \bf or \Large, etc.

    3. Figures and tables

    Figures should be submitted as encapsulated PostScript (.eps) files, but other common formats (TIFF, JPG, PNG, BMP) are also accepted.

    To produce the PostScript files, "print to file" should be avoided whenever possible; use "Save as" export facilities instead. PostScript files should be created with the following characteristics: no preview; ASCII encoding and no CTRL-Ds; all fonts used, standard and non-standard embedded in the file.

    Particular care should be taken when producing PostScript files to ensure that scaling the figure to the proper width (see below) does not produce too thin lines. It is also particularly important that PS files do not contain unnecessary text such as figure numbers, captions, file names.

    For detailed instructions on how to prepare the files, refer to Preparing the graphics for EPL.

    Captions: Each caption should be written as a single paragraph. If the same figure has different parts, these should be identified by a), b), c), etc. in roman.

    Size: As a general rule, EPL aims for a printed figure width of maximum 80 mm (one column width), or maximum 165 mm (two column width). Larger figures will be conveniently reduced. The reduction used for a particular figure will of course depend not only on the width of the original, but also on the complexity of the figure.

    Line drawings: The line thickness (i.e. pen size) used for a line drawing should never be below 0.3 pt after the reduction that it is likely to be used, as described above. Lines, numbers and symbols should be black, sharp and of uniform strength. Different parts of diagrams, graphs, etc. should be indicated by using different types of hatching rather than different grey scales, which may disappear in the printing process.

    Characters: Included text characters should appear as they would be set in the main body of the article, i.e. roman letters for text, italic letters for mathematical variables; numbers on axis scales should be oriented appropriately. There should be no large gaps between the label of axes and axes themselves. The notations used in the figures should be consistent with those used in the text; the correct use of capital and lower case in units is very important.

    Original lettering, after the appropriate reduction, should appear proportioned to the main text of the paper. After reduction all details of the figure should still be visible and all labelling legible. Avoid too thin continuous or dotted lines or too heavy lettering and thick lines.

    Colour printing: Colour figures and photographs are accepted but will be published in colour only at the author's expense. The cost of one page is EUR 732.- (EUR 122.- for each additional page).

    Even if figures are printed in black and white, they will appear in colour in the on-line version (provided the source files are in colour). Note that, in the process of conversion to grey scale, too light colours (yellow, pale green or light blue) might disappear.

    Remember that the final quality of illustrations depends on the quality of the original artwork.

    4. Multimedia

    EPL encourages authors to submit multimedia attachments to enhance the online versions of published research articles. Multimedia enhancements typically consist exclusively of video clips and animations. They can add to the reader's understanding and present results in attractive ways that go beyond what can be presented in the print version of the journal.

    The printed journal remains the archival version, and multimedia items are supplements which enhance a reader's understanding of the article but are not essential to that understanding.

    For detailed instructions on how to prepare the files, refer to Preparing multimedia files for EPL.

    5. References

    References are to be listed at the end of the text and should be indicated by square brackets [ - ] in the manuscript and all quoted in sequential order.

    Literature citations of periodicals [1], books [2], conference proceedings [3] and preprints [4] should be organised according to the following examples after the International Standard ISO Document no. 690. Journal names should be abbreviated according to the list of the Serial Title Word Abbreviations of the ISDS (International Serial Data System) if available, otherwise full journal names are preferable. In order to be useful to the reader, references should be complete and correct in all their parts. If a paper is not yet published, indicate if the paper is in preparation (in this case, the title may be specified) [5] or the journal where it has been submitted or accepted [6]. It is also helpful to supply the preprint number, the preprint archive number or the digital-object-identifier (DOI number).

    The author should take particular care to ensure that the information is correct so that IOP's HyperCiteTM facility can hyperlink to the article successfully.


    [1] BONIFACIO R. et al., Europhys. Lett., 69 (2005) 55.

    [2] LAWRIE I. D. and SARBACH S., in Phase Transition and Critical Phenomena, edited by DOMB C. and LEBOWITZ J. L., Vol. 9 (Academic Press, London) 1984, pp. 65-68.

    [3] MARQUES M. A. L. and GROSS E. K. U., in The Electron Liquid Paradigm in Condensed Matter Physics, Proceedings of the International School of Physics “Enrico Fermi”, Course CLVII, edited by GIULIANI G. F. and VIGNALE G. (IOS Press, Amsterdam) 2004, pp. 127-167.

    [4] POLYAKOV A., PUPT-1341, hep-th/9209046 preprint, 1992.

    [5] KORABEL N. et al., Fractal anomalous diffusion in intermittent dynamical systems, in preparation.

    [6] POZZI D., AMICONI G., ARCOVITO A., GIRASOLE M. and CONGIU CASTELLANO A., Haem conformation of amphibian nytrosylhaemoglobins detected by XANES spectroscopy, to be published in Eur. Phys. J. E (2005), DOI: 10.1140/epje/i2004-10092-2.

    LaTeX hint:

    • use \label, \ref, \bibitem and \cite for all cross-references, do not insert them "by hand" like eq. (2) or ref. [12].

    or use
    • the eplbib.bst file available in our EPL package.

    6. Footnotes and appendices

    Footnotes should be kept to a minimum. For notes added after submission, you can use the notation Additional Remark. Use appendices only if vital to the understanding of complex formulae and in this case, treat them as normal sections. If there are equations, they should be numbered separately from those in the main text as (A.1), (A.2), etc.

  • Contact

    EPL Editorial Office

    European Physical Society
    6, rue des Frères Lumière • F - 68200 Mulhouse • France
    tel: 33 389 32 94 44 • fax: 33 389 32 94 49

    Staff Editor: Frédéric Burr
    Editorial Assistants: Uriel Megnassan, Caroline Orbann and Jérrold Robert

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