Currently we have many accepted Chaos, Solitons and Fractals papers waiting to be published. We feel it is inappropriate to keep scientists waiting too long before their research paper is published and therefore, for the moment, we are not accepting any new submissions to the journal Chaos, Solitons and Fractals.
We trust you understand our decision and we hope you will find another suitable journal for publication of your research paper (please have a look at: www.elsevier.com). We apologise for any inconvenience and please do consider us again for your next upcoming research paper.
We at Physical Review Letters always look for ways to do better at our core mission, which is to provide the physics community with accounts of crucial research in a convenient format. PRL at present publishes about 80 Letters per week, and we Editors, and many readers of PRL, have concluded that these cannot all discuss crucial research, and that it is too large a number to be convenient. This view is also held by our editorial board and by others, as we know from a wide range of exchanges with our colleagues.
As a result we will reaffirm the standards for acceptance for PRL. The criteria will not change fundamentally, but we will work to apply them with increased rigor. To meet the PRL criteria of importance and broad interest, a Letter must
1) substantially advance a particular field; or
2) open a significant new area of research; or
3) solve a critical outstanding problem, or make a significant step toward solving such a problem; or
4) be of great general interest, based, for example, on scientific aesthetics.
We are confident that this initiative will lead to a journal that is better able to attract the best papers, because it will provide a more exclusive platform for those papers, and thus impart a higher profile to the most significant results. We also anticipate that a renewed focus on the characteristics that underlie importance and broad interest, as listed above, will lead to a more accurate selection process. As we reinvigorate the PRL criteria, we will also make every effort to make decisions promptly. This will enable results to reach the community in a timely fashion, whether in PRL or in a more suitable venue.
For this effort to be successful, authors must submit only results that meet at least one of the above criteria. Referees must judge breadth of interest based on impact both in the specific field and across field boundaries, and must support favorable recommendations with substantive reasons to publish. Editors will be more discriminating in both their own evaluation of manuscripts and their interpretation of referee reports. In support of these efforts we will revise our statement of Policies and Practices and our Referee Response Form.
We will carefully monitor the impact that application of reaffirmed standards has on the physics community. The process will necessarily be gradual, as authors, referees, Editors, and Divisional Associate Editors become familiar with more rigorous application of PRL requirements. This will also allow time to correct for any unexpected deleterious effects. Although we do not plan a specific numerical target, we do wish to make a significant change in the number of papers we publish.
We note that there are many papers that are valid and important in their area, but are not at the level of importance or broad interest that is necessary for PRL. There are also papers of great importance for their field and/or of broad interest that simply cannot be presented in a letter format. The Physical Review journals have high standards and unmatched reputations and are natural venues for such papers.
We know that these changes will lead to some disappointments. We are convinced, however, that a more selective PRL will communicate the best physics more efficiently.