International Tables for Crystallography

Small-molecule crystal structure publication using CIF
P. R. Strickland, M. A. Hoyland and B. McMahon. International Tables for Crystallography (2006). Vol. G, ch. 5.7, pp. 557-569  [ doi:10.1107/97809553602060000757 ]


The rationale for submitting an article to a journal in CIF format is outlined. Most journals currently request a CIF as supplementary material, and minimum requirements must be established for the useful information content of the CIF. Acta Crystallographica Sections C and E are journals that accept full papers in CIF format, and are presented as a case study. To submit a paper to a journal that accepts full papers in CIF format, authors need to: generate the results of their structural studies in one or more CIFs; add content to match the journal's requirements for submission; merge multiple CIFs if several structures are described; validate the complete submission against the journal's published requirements (through a standalone program or via network services); format and preview the typeset representation of their paper; and submit their paper to the journal along with any graphics and the structure-factor files. Techniques for all these stages are discussed, with particular reference to Acta Crystallographica C and E, but emphasizing general principles that might be adopted by other journals. A brief description is given of the typesetting system used by Acta Crystallographica C and E (which generates format-rich but structurally poor [\hbox{\TeX}] files). There is some discussion of the relationship between CIF and the extensible markup language XML.

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About International Tables for Crystallography

International Tables for Crystallography is the definitive resource and reference work for crystallography. The series consists of nine volumes and comprises articles and tables of data relevant to crystallographic research and to applications of crystallographic methods in all sciences concerned with the structure and properties of materials.