Guide for Authors

  • All journal information and instructions compiled in one document (PDF) in just one mouse-click Author information pack

    • Introduction
    • Types of Manuscripts
    BEFORE YOU BEGIN
    • Conflict of interest
    • Submission declaration
    • Contributors
    • Changes to authorship
    • Copyright
    • Role of the funding source
    • Language (usage and editing services)
    • Submission
    • Important notice
    • Referees
    PREPARATION
    • Use of word processing software
    • Article structure
    • Essential title page information
    • Abstract
    • Keywords
    • Abbreviations
    • Acknowledgements
    • Tables
    • References
    • Supplementary material
    • Mathematical Expressions
    • Submission checklist
    AFTER ACCEPTANCE
    • Use of the Digital Object Identifier
    • Online proof correction
    • Offprints
    • Offprints

    Introduction

    The journal of "Progress in Natural Science: Materials International" sponsored and organized by both Chinese Materials Research Society (C-MRS) and International Union of Materials Research Societies (IUMRS) started to publish its first issue in November, 2010.
    This journal reports the recent research results in the field of material science and technology, mainly covering the new materials and technologies in some key areas ,such as, energy and environmental materials; advanced structural materials; advanced transportation materials, functional and electronic materials; nano-scale and amorphous materials; health and biological materials; materials modelling and simulation; materials characterization; and so on. The latest research achievements and innovative papers in basic theoretical studies and applied research on material science will be carefully selected and promptly reported. Collectively, these articles will provide rich contributions to the global material science and technology community.

    The editorial office locates at the C-MRS headquarter office with the address of: Room 4102, No.62, Zizhuyuan Road, Haidian District, Beijing, China, 100048;Tel: 86-10-6872-2032 ;Fax: 86-10-6872-2033; Email: pns-mi@c-mrs.org.cn.

    The editorial board and all the editors of the Progress in Natural Science:Materials International are sincerely invite you to submit your papers of both original research results, reviews and letters in your research fields to publish in this journal.

    Types of Manuscripts

    The Progress in Natural Science: Materials International accepts review papers, research papers, and letters.

    Research papers:
    •A research paper presents the results of investigations on a relevant subject matter.

    •The length should not normally exceed 6000 words and 8 diagrams - this corresponds to 6-8 journal pages.

    Review articles:
    •A review article succinctly reviews recent progress on a specific subject of active research. It should summarize the current state of knowledge of the topic by discussing the findings presented in recent research papers.

    •The length should not normally exceed 8000 words and 15 diagrams - this corresponds to approximately 10 journal pages.

    Letters:
    •A letter informs the scientific community about recent research, which the authors wish to publish as quickly as possible, without writing a detailed full length research paper. The activity of IUMRS is also included.

    •The length should not normally exceed 2000 words and 4 diagrams - this corresponds to approximately 4 journal pages.

    Conflict of interest

    All authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. See also http://www.elsevier.com/conflictsofinterest. Further information and an example of a Conflict of Interest form can be found at: http://help.elsevier.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/286/p/7923.

    Submission declaration

    Submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder.
    By submitting a manuscript, the authors agree that the copyright for their article is transferred to the Chinese Materials Research Society if and when the article is accepted for publication. Responsibility for the contents of a manuscript rests upon the author(s) and not on this journal, the editors or the publisher. The technical contents of the manuscript should be carefully considered by the author(s) before submission for publication.

    Note that conference proceedings are a form of publication.

    Authors should make every effort to conform to the guidelines given below for the preparation of manuscripts. Proper preparation of manuscripts will speed publication of articles. Improperly prepared manuscripts may be returned to the author(s) for correction before being accepted for publication. The authors are advised to use either of the LaTeX or Word templates provided by the Elsevier Production Office at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/pnsmi.

    Contributors

    Each author is required to declare his or her individual contribution to the article: all authors must have materially participated in the research and/or article preparation, so roles for all authors should be described. The statement that all authors have approved the final article should be true and included in the disclosure.

    Changes to authorship

    This policy concerns the addition, deletion, or rearrangement of author names in the authorship of accepted manuscripts:
    Before the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Requests to add or remove an author, or to rearrange the author names, must be sent to the Journal Manager from the corresponding author of the accepted manuscript and must include: (a) the reason the name should be added or removed, or the author names rearranged and (b) written confirmation (e-mail, fax, letter) from all authors that they agree with the addition, removal or rearrangement. In the case of addition or removal of authors, this includes confirmation from the author being added or removed. Requests that are not sent by the corresponding author will be forwarded by the Journal Manager to the corresponding author, who must follow the procedure as described above. Note that: (1) Journal Managers will inform the Journal Editors of any such requests and (2) publication of the accepted manuscript in an online issue is suspended until authorship has been agreed.

    After the accepted manuscript is published in an online issue: Any requests to add, delete, or rearrange author names in an article published in an online issue will follow the same policies as noted above and result in a corrigendum.

    Copyright

    Upon acceptance of an article, authors will be asked to complete a 'Journal Publishing Agreement'. Acceptance of the agreement will ensure the widest possible dissemination of information. An e-mail will be sent to the corresponding author confirming receipt of the manuscript together with a 'Journal Publishing Agreement' form or a link to the online version of this agreement.
    Permission of the copyright owner is required for resale or distribution outside the institution and for all other derivative works, including compilations and translations (please contact pns-mi@c-mrs.org.cn). If excerpts from other copyrighted works are included, the author(s) must obtain written permission from the copyright owners and credit the source(s) in the article.

    Role of the funding source

    You are requested to identify who provided financial support for the conduct of the research and/or preparation of the article and to briefly describe the role of the sponsor(s), if any, in study design; in the collection, analysis and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication. If the funding source(s) had no such involvement then this should be stated.

    Language (usage and editing services)

    Please write your text in good English (American or British usage is accepted, but not a mixture of these). Authors who feel their English language manuscript may require editing to eliminate possible grammatical or spelling errors and to conform to correct scientific English may wish to use the English Language Editing service available from Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/languageediting/) or visit our customer support site (http://support.elsevier.com) for more information.

    Submission

    Progress in Natural Science: Materials Internationa is published in English and submission to this journal proceeds totally online. Use the following guidelines to prepare your article. Via the homepage of this journal (http://www.elsevier.com/locate/pnsmi) you will be guided stepwise through the creation and uploading of the various files. Correspondences to the Editorial Office may be made through the electronic address pns-mi@c-mrs.org.cn
    The system automatically converts source files to a single Adobe Acrobat PDF version of the article, which is used in the peer-review process. Please note that even though manuscript source files are converted to PDF at submission for the review process, these source files are needed for further processing after acceptance. All correspondence, including notification of the Editor's decision and requests for revision, takes place by e-mail and via the author's homepage, removing the need for a hard-copy paper trail.

    Please submit your article via http://ees.elsevier.com/pnsmi/ .
    Telephone Support for Chinese speaking users is available. Call at +86 10 85208780 (Available from 9:00 to 17:30 CST)

    Important notice

    Multi-part papers are not to be considered. Papers that are requested by the editors to be revised must be returned within 4 weeks or they will be regarded as withdrawn.
    Water Research has no page charges.

    The standards of publication for Progress in Natural Science: Materials International are extremely high. To ensure superior standards of quality and scientific validity, all papers submitted to the journal undergo a series of careful reviews by international experts, proficient in the relevant subject matter of the paper, before being accepted or rejected. Following full review procedure, inclusion of a manuscript in Progress in Natural Science: Materials International will be confirmed by an official acceptance letter forwarded to the corresponding author of the paper.

    Referees

    You are required to submit, with the manuscript, the names and addresses of 3 potential referees that can give an independent review.



    Authors should make every effort to conform to the guidelines given below for the preparation of manuscripts. Proper preparation of manuscripts will speed publication of articles. Improperly prepared manuscripts may be returned to the author(s) for correction before being accepted for publication. The authors are advised to use either of the LaTeX or Word templates provided by the Elsevier Production Office at http://www.elsevier.com/locate/pnsmi.

    Use of word processing software

    It is important that the file be saved in the native format of the word processor used. The text should be in single-column format. Keep the layout of the text as simple as possible. Most formatting codes will be removed and replaced on processing the article. In particular, do not use the word processor's options to justify text or to hyphenate words. However, do use bold face, italics, subscripts, superscripts etc. When preparing tables, if you are using a table grid, use only one grid for each individual table and not a grid for each row. If no grid is used, use tabs, not spaces, to align columns. The electronic text should be prepared in a way very similar to that of conventional manuscripts (see also the Guide to Publishing with Elsevier: http://www.elsevier.com/guidepublication). Note that source files of figures, tables and text graphics will be required whether or not you embed your figures in the text. See also the section on Electronic artwork.
    To avoid unnecessary errors you are strongly advised to use the 'spell-check' and 'grammar-check' functions of your word processor.

    Article structure

    Subdivision - numbered sections
    Divide your article into clearly defined and numbered sections. Subsections should be numbered 1.1 (then 1.1.1, 1.1.2, ...), 1.2, etc. (the abstract is not included in section numbering). Use this numbering also for internal cross-referencing: do not just refer to 'the text'. Any subsection may be given a brief heading. Each heading should appear on its own separate line.

    Introduction
    State the objectives of the work and provide an adequate background, avoiding a detailed literature survey or a summary of the results.

    Material and methods
    Provide sufficient detail to allow the work to be reproduced. Methods already published should be indicated by a reference: only relevant modifications should be described.

    Results
    Results should be clear and concise.

    Discussion
    This should explore the significance of the results of the work, not repeat them. A combined Results and Discussion section is often appropriate. Avoid extensive citations and discussion of published literature.

    Conclusions
    The main conclusions of the study may be presented in a short Conclusions section, which may stand alone or form a subsection of a Discussion or Results and Discussion section.

    Appendices
    If there is more than one appendix, they should be identified as A, B, etc. Formulae and equations in appendices should be given separate numbering: Eq. (A.1), Eq. (A.2), etc.; in a subsequent appendix, Eq. (B.1) and so on. Similarly for tables and figures: Table A.1; Fig. A.1, etc.

    Essential title page information

    Title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible.
    Author names and affiliations. Where the family name may be ambiguous (e.g., a double name), please indicate this clearly. Present the authors' affiliation addresses (where the actual work was done) below the names. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate address. Provide the full postal address of each affiliation, including the country name and, if available, the e-mail address of each author.
    Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that phone numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e-mail address and the complete postal address. Contact details must be kept up to date by the corresponding author.
    Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a 'Present address' (or 'Permanent address') may be indicated as a footnote to that author's name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes.

    Abstract

    An abstract of 200 words or less should precede the introduction. The abstract should clearly indicate the nature of the manuscript and the results described therein
    A concise and factual abstract is required. The abstract should state briefly the purpose of the research, the principal results and major message. An abstract is often presented separately from the article, so it must be able to stand alone. For this reason, References should be avoided, but if essential, they must be cited in full, without reference to the reference list. Also, abbreviations should be avoided, but if essential they must be defined at their first mention in the abstract itself.

    Keywords

    Immediately after the abstract, provide 5 keywords, avoid general and plural terms and multiple concepts (avoid, for example, "and", "of"). These terms should be relatively independent (coordinate index terms) and, as a group, should optimally characterize the paper. Be sparing with abbreviations: only abbreviations firmly established in the field may be eligible. These keywords will be used for indexing purposes. Use keywords that make your paper easy detectable for interested readers in literature databases. Repeating terms in the title is usually not needed.

    Abbreviations

    Nomenclature must be listed at the beginning of the paper and must conform to the system of standard SI units. Acronyms and abbreviations must be spelled out in full at their first occurrence in the text. In general, minimise the use of abbreviations so the paper remains easily understood by the general reader.

    Acknowledgements

    Collate acknowledgements in a separate section at the end of the article before the references and do not, therefore, include them on the title page, as a footnote to the title or otherwise. List here those individuals who provided help during the research (e.g., providing language help, writing assistance or proof reading the article, etc.).

    Electronic artwork
    General points
    • Make sure you use uniform lettering and sizing of your original artwork.
    • Embed the used fonts if the application provides that option.
    • Aim to use the following fonts in your illustrations: Arial, Courier, Times New Roman, Symbol, or use fonts that look similar.
    • Number the illustrations according to their sequence in the text.
    • Use a logical naming convention for your artwork files.
    • Provide captions to illustrations separately.
    • Size the illustrations close to the desired dimensions of the printed version.
    • Submit each illustration as a separate file.
    A detailed guide on electronic artwork is available on our website:
    http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions
    You are urged to visit this site; some excerpts from the detailed information are given here.
    Formats
    If your electronic artwork is created in a Microsoft Office application (Word, PowerPoint, Excel) then please supply 'as is' in the native document format.
    Regardless of the application used other than Microsoft Office, when your electronic artwork is finalized, please 'Save as' or convert the images to one of the following formats (note the resolution requirements for line drawings, halftones, and line/halftone combinations given below):
    EPS (or PDF): Vector drawings, embed all used fonts.
    TIFF (or JPEG): Color or grayscale photographs (halftones), keep to a minimum of 300 dpi.
    TIFF (or JPEG): Bitmapped (pure black & white pixels) line drawings, keep to a minimum of 1000 dpi.
    TIFF (or JPEG): Combinations bitmapped line/half-tone (color or grayscale), keep to a minimum of 500 dpi.
    Please do not:
    • Supply files that are optimized for screen use (e.g., GIF, BMP, PICT, WPG); these typically have a low number of pixels and limited set of colors;
    • Supply files that are too low in resolution;
    • Submit graphics that are disproportionately large for the content.

    Color artwork
    Please make sure that artwork files are in an acceptable format (TIFF, EPS or MS Office files) and with the correct resolution. If, together with your accepted article, you submit usable color figures these will be reproduced in color at no cost. For further information on the preparation of electronic artwork, please see http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.

    Other artwork Instructions
    All line drawings and photos should be in black and white, unless color is specifically requested. All lettering, graph lines and points or graphs should be succinctly large and bold to permit reproduction when the diagram has been reduced to 2 or 1 column widths. In a figure, graphs should be distinguished from each other and match their legends. If, in a figure, any mathematical expression is used, please make sure that all the superscript, subscript, small and cap letters be shown exactlyas they appear in the text.
    Original Photographs must be supplied as they are to be reproduced (e.g. black and white or colour). Please note that photocopies of photographs are not acceptable. Colour illustrations should be submitted as original photographs, high quality computer prints or transparencies, close to the size expected in publication.

    Due to technical complications which can arise from converting colour figures to "grey scale" (for the printed version should you not opt for colour in print), please submit, in addition, usable black and white prints corresponding to all colour illustrations. Electronic Graphics Submit files for graphics as EPS files. If this is not possible, Tiff files are acceptable, as long as they can be opened in Adobe Photoshop with the minimum resolution of 600 dpi. No matter what method was used to produce the graphic illustration, it is necessary to provide a paper copy to the office of Progress in Natural Science:Materials Internationa. Authors using graphic packages for the creation of electronic art should also avoid the use of any lines thinner than 0.5 points in width. Very thin lines or "hairlines", in the final printing process, become nearly invisible and may be lost entirely.

    Figure captions
    Ensure that each illustration has a caption. Supply captions separately, not attached to the figure. A caption should comprise a brief title (not on the figure itself) and a description of the illustration. Keep text in the illustrations themselves to a minimum but explain all symbols and abbreviations used.

    Tables

    Number tables consecutively in accordance with their appearance in the text. Place footnotes to tables below the table body and indicate them with superscript lowercase letters. Avoid vertical rules. Be sparing in the use of tables and ensure that the data presented in tables do not duplicate results described elsewhere in the article.
    Minimise the use of symbols and abbreviations in the tables.

    References

    Citation in text
    Please ensure that every reference cited in the text is also present in the reference list (and vice versa). Any references cited in the abstract must be given in full. Unpublished results and personal communications are not recommended in the reference list, but may be mentioned in the text. If these references are included in the reference list they should follow the standard reference style of the journal and should include a substitution of the publication date with either "Unpublished results" or "Personal communication" Citation of a reference as "in press" implies that the item has been accepted for publication.
    Only cite the original papers and those relevant for the work, no need to give a full literature review in the introduction/discussion. A large fraction of self-citations is general an indication that the authors didn't place their work well in the literature context.

    Citations should be numbered in sequence throughout the article in square brackets and listed in sequence numerically at the end of the paper.

    Web references
    As a minimum, the full URL should be given. Any further information, if known (DOI, author names, dates, reference to a source publication, etc.), should also be given. Web references can be listed separately (e.g., after the reference list) under a different heading if desired, or can be included in the reference list.

    References in a special issue
    Please ensure that the words 'this issue' are added to any references in the list (and any citations in the text) to other articles in the same Special Issue.

    Reference style
    Text: Indicate references by number(s) in square brackets in line with the text. The actual authors can be referred to, but the reference number(s) must always be given.
    Example: '..... as demonstrated [3,6]. Barnaby and Jones [8] obtained a different result ....'
    List: Number the references (numbers in square brackets) in the list in the order in which they appear in the text.
    Examples:
    Reference to a journal publication:
    [1] J. van der Geer, J.A.J. Hanraads, R.A. Lupton, The art of writing a scientific article, J. Sci. Commun. 163 (2010) 51–59.
    Reference to a book:
    [2] W. Strunk Jr., E.B. White, The Elements of Style, fourth ed., Longman, New York, 2000.
    Reference to a chapter in an edited book:
    [3] G.R. Mettam, L.B. Adams, How to prepare an electronic version of your article, in: B.S. Jones, R.Z. Smith (Eds.), Introduction to the Electronic Age, E-Publishing Inc., New York, 2009, pp. 281–304.

    Supplementary material

    Elsevier accepts electronic supplementary material to support and enhance your scientific research. Supplementary files offer the author additional possibilities to publish supporting applications, movies, animation sequences, high-resolution images, background datasets, sound clips and more. Supplementary files supplied will be published online alongside the electronic version of your article in Elsevier Web products, including ScienceDirect: http://www.sciencedirect.com. In order to ensure that your submitted material is directly usable, please ensure that data are provided in one of our recommended file formats. Authors should submit the material in electronic format together with the article and supply a concise and descriptive caption for each file. Video files: please supply 'stills' with your files: you can choose any frame from the video or make a separate image. These will be used instead of standard icons and will personalize the link to your supplementary information. For more detailed instructions please visit our artwork instruction pages at http://www.elsevier.com/artworkinstructions.

    Mathematical Expressions

    Particular care should be used in identifying unusual symbols or notations and upper and lower case letters. Define all non-standard nomenclature when they are first used. Avoid using awkward mathematical notations and non-standard symbols. Please note that consistency should be followed in using capital or small letters; superscripts or subscripts in mathematical environments. This should also be undertaken for figures where mathematical expressions are used. In type setting mathematical expressions, using Word software, please do not use any special style.

    Submission checklist

    The following list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item.
    Ensure that the following items are present:
    One author has been designated as the corresponding author with contact details:
    • E-mail address
    • Full postal address
    • Phone numbers
    All necessary files have been uploaded, and contain:
    • Keywords
    • All figure captions
    • All tables (including title, description, footnotes)
    Further considerations
    • Manuscript has been 'spell-checked' and 'grammar-checked'
    • References are in the correct format for this journal
    • All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa
    • Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web)
    • Color figures are clearly marked as being intended for color reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print, or to be reproduced in color on the Web (free of charge) and in black-and-white in print
    • If only color on the Web is required, black-and-white versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes
    For any further information please visit our customer support site at http://support.elsevier.com.

    Use of the Digital Object Identifier

    The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. Example of a correctly given DOI (in URL format; here an article in the journal Physics Letters B):
    http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physletb.2010.09.059
    When you use a DOI to create links to documents on the web, the DOIs are guaranteed never to change.

    Online proof correction

    Corresponding authors will receive an e-mail with a link to our online proofing system, allowing annotation and correction of proofs online. The environment is similar to MS Word: in addition to editing text, you can also comment on figures/tables and answer questions from the Copy Editor. Web-based proofing provides a faster and less error-prone process by allowing you to directly type your corrections, eliminating the potential introduction of errors.
    If preferred, you can still choose to annotate and upload your edits on the PDF version. All instructions for proofing will be given in the e-mail we send to authors, including alternative methods to the online version and PDF.
    We will do everything possible to get your article published quickly and accurately - please upload all of your corrections within 48 hours. It is important to ensure that all corrections are sent back to us in one communication. Please check carefully before replying, as inclusion of any subsequent corrections cannot be guaranteed. Proofreading is solely your responsibility. Note that Elsevier may proceed with the publication of your article if no response is received.

    Offprints

    The corresponding author, at no cost, will be provided with a PDF file of the article via e-mail. The PDF file is a watermarked version of the published article and includes a cover sheet with the journal cover image and a disclaimer outlining the terms and conditions of use. Additional paper offprints can be ordered by the authors. An order form with prices will be sent to the corresponding author.

    Offprints

    The corresponding author, at no cost, will be provided with a personalized link providing 50 days free access to the final published version of the article on ScienceDirect. This link can also be used for sharing via email and social networks. For an extra charge, paper offprints can be ordered via the offprint order form which is sent once the article is accepted for publication. Both corresponding and co-authors may order offprints at any time via Elsevier's WebShop (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/offprints). Authors requiring printed copies of multiple articles may use Elsevier WebShop's 'Create Your Own Book' service to collate multiple articles within a single cover (http://webshop.elsevier.com/myarticleservices/booklets).

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