13 July 2015


Optica Celebrates Second Anniversary with the launch of a new article type for breakthrough results and receipt of its first impact factor

Washington – Optica, The Optical Society’s open access, online journal dedicated to rapidly disseminating the highest impact peer-reviewed research across the entire spectrum of optics and photonics, celebrates its two-year anniversary this month.

As part of its continuing efforts to provide an open and trusted forum for innovative results in optics and photonics research, Optica will now offer authors a fourth type of paper submission called “Memorandum.”  This article type is one that harkens to the past when authors wrote formal letters to the editor.  This type of communication has all but disappeared from most scientific research journals as a vehicle for announcing new results, having been replaced by the currently familiar four- or five-page short-paper format.  With Memorandum in place, Optica will now offer a total of four article types—letter, article, mini-review and memorandum.

“The key characteristics of this new paper type are impact, brevity, and extremely short time-to-publication.  Each one will present a succinct announcement of an important new result that should be disseminated to the optics community quickly.  As OSA’s open access journal for high-impact research, Optica’s wide availability and prestige mean it is perfectly placed to offer this article type to today’s optics and photonics community,” said Alex Gaeta, Optica Editor-In-Chief.  “I am very pleased to be able to highlight our first Memorandum as we launch this new feature.  In the July issue, we are publishing an announcement of the most complex integrated silicon photonic network on a chip that has been fabricated from John Bowers' group at University of California at Santa Barbara, which illustrates these principles well.”

Memorandum submission requirements include a strict two-page limit and a 35-word abstract that must make the impact of the result clear to a broad audience. Using the Journal’s existing rapid initial editorial review process, submissions will be assessed by two associate editors from the board of prominent, active researchers. Only one round of review and minor revisions will be allowed. Since memoranda will deal with important and timely results, the aim is to publish them in less than 4-6 weeks.

Published monthly, with articles made available online as soon as they are ready, Optica has established itself as a trusted source for some of the best and most exciting work in the optics and photonics field and provides a forum for that pioneering research to be swiftly accessed by the international community. In a demonstration of its relevance and appeal, the Journal recently achieved a partial Impact Factor (IF) of 5.205 in the 2015 Journal Citation Reports® (Thomson Reuters, 2016), based on the number of citations to articles published in its first six issues alone.  The Journal has experienced a 50% growth in downloads in the last year and submissions continue to increase beyond expectations.  Further, articles are regularly featured in mainstream media because of their broad appeal.

“When we launched Optica two years ago, we did so with the goal of better meeting the needs of the optics and photonics community.  Based on the robust submissions, significant appeal in the mainstream media, and the Journal’s partial first Impact Factor, we believe that we are on the right track,” said Elizabeth Nolan, deputy executive director and chief publishing officer, The Optical Society.  “This new article type further establishes Optica as a highly attractive outlet for the highest impact research in optics and photonics and reflects OSA’s continued desire to expand and develop the Journal.  Introducing Memoranda in the same month that the Journal launched two years ago is also an appropriate way to mark its second anniversary.
About Optica
Optica is an open-access, online-only journal dedicated to the rapid dissemination of high-impact peer-reviewed research across the entire spectrum of optics and photonics. Published monthly by The Optical Society (OSA), Optica provides a forum for pioneering research to be swiftly accessed by the international community, whether that research is theoretical or experimental, fundamental or applied. Optica maintains a distinguished editorial board of more than 40 associate editors from around the world and is overseen by Editor-in-Chief Alex Gaeta, Columbia University, USA. For more information, visit Optica.

About The Optical Society
Founded in 1916, The Optical Society (OSA) is the leading professional organization for scientists, engineers, students and entrepreneurs who fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light. Through world-renowned publications, meetings and membership initiatives, OSA provides quality research, inspired interactions and dedicated resources for its extensive global network of optics and photonics experts. For more information, visit osa.org/100.
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