Tabular Data - Interactive Plots

We are currently improving the display of data visualizations on ScienceDirect. As a result, tabular data/iPlot visualizations will not display on ScienceDirect immediately. However, you may still submit your data files and they will appear with your article once the new version is available later in 2018.

About line and scatter chart visualizations

You can include interactive line or scatter charts in your article on ScienceDirect. In these charts, users can hover over data points, select datasets or zoom in and out. In addition, they can access the source data via a data tab or a download option.

Interactive charts will not be printed or included in the PDF version of your article. If you would like to have the chart there, please include an image version as a figure in your article.

Example Articles

Author Instructions

The current version of our viewer has been designed to support simple xy plots. If the x data is increasing going down in the column, connecting lines will be drawn to create a line chart. If the x data is not increasing, no connecting lines will be drawn, creating a scatter chart.


Data files for line and scatter charts must be saved and submitted in CSV (comma-separated values) format. Nearly all database software programs – including Microsoft Excel – support this export option.

To format the file correctly, please take the following into account:

  • Each column represents a data series. Your file should have at least two columns so the data can be visualized as (X, Y) pairs on a plot. If you include more columns, these will be presented as multiple series on the plot.
  • The first row acts as header and should contain the label of the data series in plain text.
  • Please remember to include units in the labels (between brackets)

An example of a correctly formatted file is show below.

image of iPlots table

A file like this would display as the image below. Please note this is a flat image that does not show the interactivity. To see the full interactivity, try saving this file as CSV and uploading it into our Interactive Plots Preview Tool.

How this CSV will render

Our current version of the viewer has the following number of restrictions. For ensuring correct display:

  • Please do not include special characters in the header labels.
  • Your file should have 2-10 columns.
  • The maximum number of rows is 250.
  • There should not be any empty cells.
  • The application supports numbers with up to 3 decimal digits. If your data contains numbers with more than 3 decimal digits, please use scientific notation, e.g. 1.123E-07.
  • The maximum file size is 500KB.


You can check if your file works and how it will look online using the Interactive Plots Preview Tool. Please double check that you mention the units (between brackets).


Upload your file together with your article via the submission system. Important: To ensure we can distinguish your file from a regular data file, please be sure to select the option “Interactive Plots”.

In your manuscript, you can indicate where you want the material to appear in the article, for example, by writing ‘File1.csv here’.

Reviewer Instructions

Reviewers will find CSV files associated with line and scatter charts in the supplementary material submitted with the manuscript. Editors and reviewers can use the Interactive Plots Preview Tool to inspect Interactive Plot files during the review process.

  • EES: the files can be downloaded via links on the final pages of the reviewer PDF
  • EVISE: the files can be downloaded directly from the system

For more information, read the general reviewer instructions.