Frequently asked questions

1. Are the preprints posted on ChemRxiv peer-reviewed? Are they checked prior to publication?

The preprints on ChemRxiv are not peer-reviewed, edited, or typeset. All preprints are subject to a basic screening following submission, during which they are checked for plagiarism, offensive, dangerous, and/or non-scientific content. The ChemRxiv organizers cannot endorse any information in or linked to from the preprints.

2. What is a preprint?

Preprints are manuscripts made publicly available before they have been submitted for formal peer review and publication. They might contain new research findings or data. Preprints can be a draft or final version of an authors' research but must not have been accepted for publication at the time of submission. All authors must agree to the work being posted on ChemRxiv.

3. What type of information is posted on ChemRxiv?

ChemRxiv's focus is technical, scientific information covering the chemical sciences and related fields. News, advertisements, and policy statements are not appropriate for this forum, and will be declined if received.

Complementary preprint services, such as arXiv and bioRxiv, are available for findings that clearly fall into the physics, mathematics, or life science fields.

Please note: ChemRxiv does not currently accept unpublished book chapters or review articles. We can accept work that has previously appeared in a PhD thesis, if it has been written as a manuscript independent of the original thesis.

4. Is there a fee to submit or read a preprint on ChemRxiv?

No. Preprints on ChemRxiv are free for both authors and readers.

5. How long does it take from submission to posting on ChemRxiv?

Preprints are typically posted 1-2 business days after submission.

6. Do I have to use a certain file formats to post to ChemRxiv? Which file formats can I use to download a preprint posted on ChemRxiv?

You can submit your preprint in any file format (maximum file size 5GB) using the drag-and-drop function during submission. ChemRxiv will preserve the original file's information and formatting throughout the checking and posting process. Once posted, readers can view through the web browser viewing tool, or download the preprint in the original format.

To help readers, you should create and submit a PDF version of their article alongside the original file(s). If we don't receive a PDF, we will make every effort to create one during the posting process, but we won't be able to send this to you for proofing.

You should also make use of other subject-appropriate repositories (for example Protein Data Bank or Cambridge Crystallographic Data Centre (CCDC)), and include links to these repositories in the Reference section of the preprint submission form. These links will then appear in your ChemRxiv record.

7. Can I post a preprint in any language?

Currently we can only accept preprints in English.

8. What happens after I submit my preprint to ChemRxiv?

Every preprint submitted to ChemRxiv undergoes a triage process, during which the article is screened for plagiarism, offensive, dangerous, and/or non-scientific content.

This process is carried out by PhD chemists, but it is not peer review. We make no assessment of the accuracy, completeness, or import of the science presented. The goal of a preprint server is to post scientific findings quickly for broader discussion by the community.

In cases where authors do not include a PDF version alongside original files, ChemRxiv administrators also make every effort to create a PDF version for posting and download by readers without additional author proofing. ChemRxiv retains the right to deny posting any preprint deemed inappropriate by the ChemRxiv administrators.

9. I have already submitted my article to a journal. Can I also submit to ChemRxiv?

ChemRxiv can accept articles that have been submitted, but not yet accepted, by a journal. If you do wish to submit to ChemRxiv after you have already submitted to a journal, it is your responsibility to check with the journal editor and make sure that submission to ChemRxiv:

1. will not interfere with the journal's prior publication policies, and
2. will not have an impact on the manuscript already under review at the journal

10. Can I remove a preprint that is already posted on ChemRxiv?

No, this isn't possible. Preprints receive DOIs during the ChemRxiv posting process and are therefore fully citable and part of the scientific record. They are also indexed by Chemical Abstracts Services, CrossRef, and Google Scholar. Ethical publication guidelines require that files are preserved at this point. We do however retain the right to remove any preprint in cases of copyright infringement or other issues that the preprint server's management deems critical.

11. Is there an open API for ChemRxiv?

Yes, ChemRxiv is Open API compatible. You can review the full documentation, or download the Open API Swagger specification. Additionally, ChemRxiv will support OAuth 2.0 Authorization Framework; of note, the ChemRxiv specific OAuth tokens are not yet available, coming soon.

12. What is ChemRxiv's impact factor? What other metrics are available for ChemRxiv? Where are ChemRxiv preprints indexed?

ChemRxiv is a preprint service, rather than a journal, so, like other preprint servers such as arXiv and bioRxiv, it does not have an impact factor.

Preprint-based usage and Altmetrics (tracking attention to the preprint based on blogs, tweets, news articles, and other media) are updated in real time, and can be found on the right side of the preprint record.

ChemRxiv preprints are indexed by Chemical Abstracts Services, Google, Google Scholar, CrossRef, and other search tools. Preprints are not indexed by Web of Science.

13. Who determines how ChemRxiv will operate and the specific details?

ChemRxiv is a community-centric endeavor, and the scope, governance and operating principles were defined after broad consultation. Many organizations provided input, including the American Chemical Society, GDCh and Royal Society of Chemistry, along with other preprint services, not for profit organizations, chemistry community members writ large, publishers, and funding agencies.

We used the feedback from this consultation to identify the specific requirements for launching ChemRxiv, and it, alongside ongoing community consultation, will help to shape the future of the service.

We are in the final stages of forming both a governance and scientific board, with responsibility to oversee the strategic direction for ChemRxiv. There will be more on this in the coming months.

A group of PhD chemists employed by or contracted by ChemRxiv are engaged in the triage process, and a Publishing Manager for ChemRxiv, Dr Marshall Brennan, oversees day-to-day operations.

14. Is ChemRxiv a regional or global service?

ChemRxiv is global - all interested authors can submit a preprint, and preprints are available globally for readers to download and view.

15. What are the benefits of a chemistry preprint server to authors?

A chemistry preprint server enables researchers working across diverse areas of inquiry to share early results and data with their scientist colleagues ahead of formal peer review and publication, to elicit informal feedback from other scientists to help in shaping their work, to allow authors the option of establishing priority, and to advance the pace of scientific discovery and dissemination.

16. Do journals in chemistry allow authors who have posted preprints to submit to the journal?

Today, the majority of journals in the chemistry space allow authors to first post preprints. You can find this information in a particular journal's policy, most often prior publication or preprint policies, or by contacting the journal's editor. Researchers may also find the information available here useful in assessing publisher policies.

17. Why is there a need for a chemistry-specific preprint server? Can't chemists use arXiv or bioRxiv?

Chemistry is the central science. We believe each major discipline will ultimately have a discipline-specific preprint server. While we are engaged in efforts to find commonalities with arXiv, bioRxiv, and are exploring leveraging common resources and tools, we recognize that chemistry authors and readers will benefit from a space dedicated to their field and their needs, as our colleagues at arXiv have for physics and math, and bioRxiv for the life sciences.

18. How do I revise my preprint or correct errors?

You may revise a preprint at any time up until it is posted to ChemRxiv.

Once posted, you can submit a revision. To do this, log in to your account and go to My Submissions, then choose the preprint to modify by clicking the pencil-shaped Edit icon that appears on the right side of the screen. If you would like to add new files, drag them into this pane; to re-order the files or delete files, click on "Manage" in the top right.

We encourage authors to revise their preprints as often as they see fit; however, we reserve the right to decline revisions at the Publishing Manager's discretion. In these cases, we will send a description of why the revision was declined to the submitting author.

Journal prior publication policies may limit your ability to revise your preprint while it is under review. It is your responsibility to ensure that your revision is in accordance with the policy of a journal considering your preprint for publication.

Please note - revisions submitted as such will be posted under the same DOI as the original preprint with an appropriate version indicator, unless ChemRxiv's management deems the changes to be substantial enough to warrant a new preprint. All original files will remain accessible in earlier versions, with appropriate time/date stamps.

19. How will the preprint on ChemRxiv be linked to a related journal article once published?

ChemRxiv automatically adds a link to the preprint within a few weeks of journal publication. The timing depends on when the journal posts its files to CrossRef, allowing ChemRxiv to check and make matches between preprints and published articles. If you have concerns about whether your preprint has been properly matched to the published article, email the Publishing Manager and we will do everything in our power to establish the link manually.

20. Does ChemRxiv allow text data mining? If so, under what terms?

ChemRxiv does allow metadata mining and allows all associated files to be downloaded. Interested users should refer to the Open API documentation.

The terms applicable to the mining of preprints are determined by the author's selection of a Creative Commons license - including CC-BY-NC-ND, CC-BY-NC, and CC-BY. Interested parties may limit searches to specific license types to meet their specific reuse needs.

21. What rights do I have under ChemRxiv's license options? Do I have to assign my copyright to ChemRxiv?

ChemRxiv does not require authors to assign copyright. As a result, when using one of the Creative Commons licenses offered by ChemRxiv, authors are able to sign publishing agreements with most publishers, including ACS Publications, RSC Publishing and journals published by Wiley-VCH in partnership with the GDCh. Authors are encouraged to confirm the policies of the journal they intend to submit to prior to posting a preprint, however.

Authors can choose one of three licenses when posting their preprint to ChemRxiv. These include:

CC-BY 4.0: This is a Creative Commons license that permits reuse of any kind with proper attribution.

CC-BY-NC 4.0: This license allows reuse for any non-commercial purpose with proper attribution. "Non-commercial" in this case refers to an application not primarily intended for commercial advantage or monetary compensation and does not depend on the identity of the user. That is, a for-profit company can use a preprint using an NC license for non-commercial purposes without being in violation of the license terms.

CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0: This license contains all of the conditions of CC-BY-NC with the additional provision that adapting the work into a derivative is not permitted. A derivative in this case would include but is not limited to a translation of a preprint from one language to another, the addition of annotations to the preprint, or a reformatting of the work. Generally, a derivative is work that has not been changed with sufficient creativity to be copyrightable as a separate entity.

Authors may be interested in the very thorough Licensing FAQ provided by ASAPbio here.