Frequently Asked Questions about Physics

Are there printer friendly versions of Physics articles?

Printer friendly versions of all articles are available and in addition PDF files can be downloaded for Viewpoints and Trends (under Article Options on the right of the article web page).

How may I stay up-to-date with Physics?

There are two ways to be alerted about new content in Physics. First, we provide an RSS feed that is an ideal way to keep up with new content. This feed is available at (or by clicking on the RSS icon in the banner of each page of the Physics web site). For more APS RSS feeds as well as information about how to use RSS feeds, please see We also offer email alerts that are typically sent out once a week. You may sign up to receive these alerts at

Is Physics online-only?

Yes. However, we may periodically make print versions (collections of articles) in a magazine style.

Is there a subscription fee for Physics?

No, Physics is open access, as are the underlying papers that are highlighted by Viewpoints, but not those articles cited in the Focus, Synopses or Trends articles. To get to the free-to-read articles, you need to enter through the Physics site, rather than the APS journal home pages.

What is the relationship between Physics and Physical Review Letters and the other Physical Review journals?

Unlike Physical Review Letters and the other Physical Review journals, Physics does not publish primary research. Its purpose is to highlight the best papers in the Physical Review journals. The editors of the journals participate in selecting which papers will be highlighted.

Will Physics cover articles from other journals?

While we are currently focusing on the Physical Review journals for our source articles, we may expand our coverage in the future.

What is the difference between the article types?

Viewpoints are expert-written essays that focus on one or a few papers and put this work into broader context. Synopses are editor-written distillations of interesting and important papers. Focus stories summarize the results of a paper in a journalistic style and are written by professional science writers. Focus stories emphasize basic physics concepts and are aimed at a broad readership, including interested laypersons. Trends are concise review articles that survey a particular area and look for interesting developments in that field.

What are the subject categories and will new ones be added?

We revise the subject categories over time. Some are based on those in our research journals (see the various subject-based RSS feeds at for example), but some aren't. A list of the current categories can be seen on the Browse page (

Why do you only list the first author for most Synopses and Viewpoints?

We understand that affiliations are a sensitive issue, but we find that listing more than one author leads to cumbersome writing that is distracting to most readers. A link to the paper is prominently placed above the synopsis that lists all of the authors on the paper.

Can I reuse an image from Physics?

Requests for permission to reuse an image from a Physics article should be directed to In most cases, an appropriate credit for the image is "APS Physics" or "APS Physics/artist’s name." Exceptions are images from the APS journals (Physical Review and Physical Review Letters) and images obtained with permission from a third party. In such cases, the APS journals ( or the third party should be contacted for express permission to reuse an image.

When did Physical Review Focus become part of Physics?

Focus became a section on the Physics website on October 20th, 2011 (see Editorial).

How do I cite a Focus story?

Before October 20th, 2011 Focus stories appeared on the website Those stories should continue to be cited as in the following example: Phys. Rev. Focus 1, 1 (1998). Stories published on or after October 20th, 2011 are considered part of the Physics publication and should be cited as in the following example: Physics 4, 83 (2011).

What happens to the URLs of Focus stories that were published on

URLs of stories that published on have been redirected to the correct Focus story on the Physics website. The Physics archive contains all of the Focus stories that have published, dating back to 1998.

How may I send feedback about Physics?

We welcome feedback and comments about Physics. Please email

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