LaTeX style file and templates

Authors who use LaTeX may prepare their papers for submission with a set of customised macros. The macros allow an author to structure a manuscript in the style of the journal, and to present mathematical equations in a portable form. A LyX template is also available for users of this LaTeX-compatible graphical document editor.


  1. LaTeX2e, version 1997/12/01 or later.
  2. The iucr macro package.
  3. Optionally, BiBTeX for citation handling.
See availability below for sources.

General notes on the use of the iucr package

A paper prepared in LaTeX format should declare a document of class iucr; that is, the first non-comment line of the file should be of the form


Additional options will normally be specified with this command. The most common option is preprint, to produce a single-column double-spaced version of the paper suitable for review purposes. Use this option for the hard-copy version of the paper submitted to the Co-editor:


Since the journals are not typeset directly from LaTeX (but from another language, SGML, into which the LaTeX file is translated), it is usually appropriate to prepare the manuscript solely in this 'preprint' mode.

For papers containing long mathematical equations, it is helpful if the author processes the paper without the preprint mode during initial preparation, so that the equations may be adjusted to fit properly into the narrow columns of the journal.

Special instructions for Acta Crystallographica Section D

Manuscripts should be prepared for submission to a Coeditor with the document class invocation:
References to structures deposited in the Protein Data Bank or Nucleic Acids Database should be inserted using the macros \PDBref or \NDBref in the header portion of the article. See the documentation for further information.

Electronic versions of the figures should preferably be PostScript files, with one figure per page. However, there is no objection to calling figures into the LaTeX file so that they can be printed in the hard-copy review manuscript. When accepted for publication, the final version to be submitted to the editorial office should be prepared with the invocation

for full research papers, or
for short contributions (such as Short Communications or Crystallization Papers), to ensure that mathematical equations will fit into the narrow columns used in the journal.


LaTeX and BiBTeX

LaTeX and BiBTeX may be obtained free of charge from the Comprehensive TeX Archive or from a variety of public ftp archives. Specific implementations for many computer systems are also available from commercial vendors. A convenient source of the programs and supporting files is the TeXLive CD-ROM distribution.

The iucr package

The complete package is available by anonymous ftp from the server, in the templates/latex directory.

  • The macros are contained in the file iucr.cls;
  • commands for formatting a bibliography with the BiBTeX program are in the file iucr.bst;
  • documentation is in the file documentation.ltx, which acts also as a test file for the correct functioning of the macros, and which should be processed by LaTeX and BibTeX along with the files
  • The file template.ltx may be used as a template for constructing submissions to IUCr journals.

The documentation is available in PDF format online.

LyX template

LyX is a graphical document editor useful for the preparation of LaTeX files by non-LaTeX users. To quote from the LyX web site

LyX is an advanced open source document processor that encourages an approach to writing based on the structure of your documents, not their appearance. LyX lets you concentrate on writing, leaving details of visual layout to the software.

LyX runs on many Unix platforms, OS/2, and under Windows/Cygwin (this port requires an X server). It can also run natively on Mac OS X, thanks to the Qt/Mac library.

LyX produces high quality, professional output -- using LaTeX, an industrial strength typesetting engine, in the background; LyX is far more than a front-end to LaTeX, however. No knowledge of LaTeX is necessary to use LyX, although it will give a user more power.

LyX is stable and fully featured. It has been used for documents as large as a thesis, or as small as a business letter. Despite its simple GUI interface (available in many languages), it supports tables, figures, and hyperlinked cross-references, and has a best-of-breed math editor.

A basic template file suitable for use with the iucr.cls macros is available by courtesy of Ethan Merritt, of the University of Washington.

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