The preamble of your TEX file

Loading the class: various A&A layouts


To get the standard A&A 2-column-layout (i.e. single-line spacing), you have to include this command at the beginning of your article.


Both for refereeing purposes and, after acceptance, for language editing purposes, the authors are requested to send their article in "Referee format", i.e. with a special double-line spacing layout. To set this class option, please include the referee option. This special layout also provides a list of all astronomical objects indexed with the \object command.


There is a special layout for Letters. The mention "Letter to the Editor" is automatically added.


In articles that are the result of consortia, the number of authors and the list of affiliations are very long. With the longauth option, all the institutes are set below the references.


Some papers contain a lot of large mathematical formulae that are sometimes cannot be read easily and cannot be written in a 2-column format. In this case, the authors can submit their articles using the option onecolumn. After the submission, the editors will confirm that the article will actually be displayed in 1 column, right across the page.


If you don't use structured references (according to the author-year natbib style), add this option.

PDF files for the different layouts obtained with this A&A class will display the line numbers. Please note that the “linenoaa.sty” package must always be in the directory of the source (article) to be compiled.

TX fonts

A&A uses the Postscript TX Times-fonts. The TX fonts consist of virtual text roman fonts using Adobe Times with some modified and additional text symbols. The TX fonts are distributed under the GNU public license and are available in the distributions of LaTeX since December 2000.


As the use of the TX fonts results in a slightly different page make-up from CM fonts, we encourage you to use TX fonts, following this example.

The manuscript header


Make the title short and communicative; do not use acronyms, except those that are in general use; avoid acronyms known only to those deeply specialized. The main title and the subtitle should not be capitalised, except for the first letter and any other words that are always capitalised. Math variables and symbols should be typeset as in the text.

In the manuscript TEX file, please code the title and subtitle of your article as follows:

\title{your title}
\subtitle{your subtitle}

If a long \title or \subtitle needs to split across two or more lines, please insert linebreaks (\\).

Authors and addresses

For every manuscript, all authors and all addresses should be listed. Addresses should contain e-mail addresses where possible. A number should precede each address and the authors' names should be marked with the appropriate numerical superscript(s). Unless the authors request otherwise, the e-mail addresses will be included in the affiliation to facilitate information exchange between readers and authors.

Names of authors

The preferred form for each name is: initial(s) of the forename(s) followed by the family name.

\author{first author name
\and second author name
\and third author name... }

If there is more than one author, the order is optional. The names should be separated by \and. If the authors have different affiliations, each name has to be followed by \inst{}. Numbers referring to different addresses should be attached to each author, pointing to the corresponding institute.

A&A offers authors the possibility of being identified with non-Roman alphabets, such as Chinese, Japanese, Cyrillic characters (see specific instructions here).


\institute{name of the first institute
\and name of the second institute}

If there is more than one address, the entries are numbered automatically with \and, in the order in which you type them. Please make sure that the numbers match those placed next to the authors' names.

The authors' institutes can also be given using labels, so that there is no need to rewrite the full institutes list if the order of the authors changes during the evaluation process. An example is given below:

\author{V.~Arsenijevic\inst{\ref{inst1}}\and S.~Fabbro\inst{\ref{inst2}}\and
A.~M.~Mour\~ao\inst{\ref{inst3}}\and A.~J.~Rica da Silva\inst{\ref{inst1}}}

\institute{Multidisciplinar de Astrof\'{\i}sica, IST, Avenida Rovisco Pais, 1049
Lisbon, Portugal\email{...}\label{inst1} \and < Multidisciplinar de Astrof\'{\i}sica, IST, Avenida Rovisco Pais, 1049 Lisbon, Portugal\email{...}\label{inst2}
Multidisciplinar de Astrof\'{\i}sica, IST, Avenida Rovisco Pais, 1049
Lisbon, Portugal\email{...}\label{inst3}

In the case of large collaborations involving several tens of authors, a special formatting of the authors' list is requested in order to save space. With the longauth option, all the institutes are set below the references (see section Loading the class).

Footnote to the title block

...\thanks{text of footnote}

If footnotes to the title, subtitle, author's names or institute addresses are needed, please use thanks immediately after the word where the footnote indicator should be placed. These footnotes are marked by asterisks (*). If you need more than one consecutive footnote, use \fnmsep to typeset the comma separating the asterisks (see example in the file aa.demavailable in the macro package).

Dates of receipt and acceptance

Enter the receipt and acceptance dates as follows:

\date{Received date /
Accepted date }

The date is in format "day month year" (e.g., 1 January 2005).

The receipt and acceptance dates of your manuscript will be set by the editors and inserted by the publisher.


A new concept "Structured Abstract" is implemented with the version 6.0 of the A&A macro package. Just like a traditional abstract, a structured abstract summarizes the content of the paper, but it does make the structure of the article explicit and visible. For doing so, the structured abstract uses headings that define several short paragraphs. Three paragraphs, entitled respectively Aims, Methods, and Results, are mandatory. When appropriate, the structured abstract may use an introductory paragraph entitled Context, and a final paragraph entitled Conclusions.

Proceed as follows:


The second, third and fourth arguments have to be completed. The first one and the last one might be left empty. For example:

\abstract {} {Text of aims} {Text of methods} {Text of results} {}

The abstract should accurately summarize the paper's content, be limited to 300 words, and be self-contained (no references, and abbreviations or acronyms should be introduced). A counter of words has been added with an error message for an abstract exceeding 300 words. Citations in an abstract display an error message. Please note that abstract is a command with 5 arguments, and not an environment.

Remark: Authors who prefer to keep a non-structured an unstructured format can do so using the command \abstract{..} which will make the abstract a single paragraph without headings.

Key words

A maximum of 6 key words should be listed after the abstract. These must be selected from a list that is published each year in the first issue in January. This list is common to the major astronomical and astrophysical journals.

List of key words.

In your TEX file, the key words should read as follows:

\keywords{stars: chromospheres -- stars: late-type -- stars: winds, outflows -- radio continuum: stars }

Formatting the header and the running title

Having entered the commands described above to set the title block of the article, please format the complete heading of your article by typing:


If you leave it out, the work done so far will produce no text. The command \maketitle will automatically generate the running title, derivating it from the author and title inputs. If the title is too long for the space available, you will be asked to supply a shorter version. In this case, enter before \maketitle :

\titlerunning{short title}
\authorrunning{name(s) of author(s)}

If there are two authors, both names, separated by an ampersand (&, coded as \&), should be given; if there are more than two authors, the name of the first plus et al.should be given. The title should be shortened to a maximum of about 60 characters, spaces ignored, following the wording of the original title as closely as possible. If a paper has a numbered subtitle, the main title (length permitting) should be given, followed by the roman numeral of the subtitle.

The Editors reserve the right to modify the running head suggested by the authors, should this be necessary.

The required style is illustrated below (the colon will be inserted by the macro):

N. Copernicus: How active is NGC 4258?
E. Hertzsprung & E.P. Hubble: Optical spectroscopy of WR stars in M33 and M31. II
A.S. Eddington et al.: Infrared lines as probes of solar magnetic features. IV
C. Barbieri et al.: (RN) First HST/FOC images of the low mass companion of the astronomic binary Gliese 623

The section LaTeX examples provides an example of a manuscript header coded with LaTeX.

The main text

Manuscripts should be divided into numbered sections and subsections, starting with "1. Introduction". Subsections should be numbered 2.1, 2.2, 3.1, etc. All sections must have a short descriptive title. In the TEX file, the sections appear as follows.



Please always give a \label where possible (figures, tables, section) and use \ref for cross-referencing. Such cross-references will be converted to HTML hyper-links. The \cite- and \bibitem-mechanism for bibliographic references as well as the \object command is also mandatory.


A special section for acknowledgements may be included before the References list. It will appear as follows:

\begin{acknowledgements} ... \end{acknowledgements}

Some aspects of typographic style within the text

The following expressions should always be abbreviated unless they appear at the beginning of a sentence (i.e. Sect., Sects., Fig., Figs., Col., Cols.). Table is never abbreviated.

Abbreviations of concepts, methods, instruments, observatories, etc may be used throughout the text, but the full wording followed by the abbreviation in parentheses should be given once in the Abstract (if appropriate) and/or once when first mentioned in the main text (usually in the Introduction).

Examples: ...very long baseline interferometry (VLBI)...; ... Westerbork Radio Telescope (WRT)...


Figures submitted to the Journal must be of the highest quality to ensure accuracy and clarity in the final published copy. You can supply graphics in eps, pdf, jpg, png, and tiff formats, or as native Photoshop/Illustrator files. We recommend that you refrain from using conversion tools that might decrease the quality of the figures.

We urge the author to limit the empty space in and around figures. Artwork should be in sharp focus, with clean, clear numbers and letters and with sharp black lines. Thin lines should be avoided, particularly in figures requiring considerable reduction. Authors should check whether laser-printed originals of these figures are acceptable (especially for grayscale).

Background grids and colors are not allowed in figures, unless they contain additional information (galactic coordinate grid superposed on an image with equatorial coordinate axes for example).

The author is warned that changes in the size and arrangement of figures can be made by the publisher at the production stage. Because of the bulk of the Journal, the production office will reduce most figures to fit a one-column format (88 mm). If necessary, figures may extend across the entire page width (max. 180 mm). Intermediate widths with a side caption are also possible (max. 120 mm). The illustrations should be placed at the top of the column and flush-left according to layout conventions.

If lettered parts of a figure (e.g., 1a, 1b, 1c, etc.) are referred to in the figure legend, each part of the figure should be labeled with the appropriate letter within the image area. Symbols should be explained in the caption and not in the figure. Please use lower case for any words in figures to comply with the A&A style.

See this page for examples of how figures should be coded in the TeX file.

About figures format

Depending of your preferred LaTeX engine (LaTeX or pdfLaTeX), figures should be sent as encapsulated PostScript files or in any other format as PDF, JPG, TIFF, PNG, BMP, and GIF (compatible with pdfLaTeX).

All graphics are either vector graphics or bitmap graphics. Vector figures are graphics consisting of individual, scalable objects such as lines, curves, and shapes with editable attributes, therefore you can resize a vector without loss of quality. The bitmap figures are graphics composed of dots called pixels. Because bitmaps have a fixed resolution, enlarging or reducing them produce jagged and distorted images because extra pixels are added or supressed. Some software packages leave a considerable margin around the figures. You may have to adjust the BoundingBox for EPS figures by hand with the help of ghostview, for example. The figure can also be automatically changed with the psfixbb command, which you will find in almost any LaTeX distribution.

For other formats as PDF, JPG, and bitmap formats, crop out any extra spaces around the figures and also check very carefully that the resolution is at least 250/300 dpi and not 92 dpi, as in standard screen JPG files. The easiest way to include your figures is by using the graphicx package, which comes along with the standard LaTeX2e distribution. See the document by Keith Reckdahl "Using Imported Graphics in LaTeX2e", which explains how to use imported graphics in LaTeX2e documents. The Part I, Background Information provides historical information and describes basic LaTeX2e terminology and graphic formats.