Open Access

AIAA and Open Access (OA)

Since 2012, AIAA has been a green open access (OA) publisher, permitting authors to post their accepted manuscripts for personal use and in approved repositories. Our posting policy permits authors to post their accepted conference papers and journal manuscripts on their personal websites and archive them in university or institutional repositories, as well as subject-based repositories where content is not for sale. AIAA maintains the final edited and formatted article as the version of record. In 2016, AIAA transitioned all scholarly journals to a hybrid gold OA model, with the institution of a voluntary article processing fee (APC) that permits the article version of record to be openly accessible immediately upon publication in Aerospace Research Central (ARC). Even though over time the APCs are expected to cover actual production costs, unlike AIAA’s current voluntary publications charges, the APC reflects the value of the free access to the article, regardless of article type. 

U.S. Federal Agency Public Access Mandates
Supporting AIAA’s Authors with Open Access
Copyright Licensing and Open Access
Open Access FAQs

In 2013, U.S. federal agencies with annual R&D budgets in excess of $100 million were tasked by the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to develop public (open) access plans so that journal articles and digital data resulting from U.S. federally funded research will be freely available to the public within one year of publication. Since then, agencies have begun to announce their public access implementation plans, and AIAA is committed to supporting our journal authors who are subject to federal mandates. Public access mandates are requirements set on all researchers who accept federal grant money.

Authors who have accepted federal grants are responsible for depositing their accepted manuscripts into dedicated archives and otherwise complying with agency mandates. Current agency public access plans and their respective requirements can be found here.

AIAA’s hybrid open access model ensures that when APCs are paid, the OA version of record (VOR) is openly accessible, along with future updates and revisions to the article. Author funding of open access through AIAA ensures that the most up-to-date version of the article in Aerospace Research Central (ARC) is freely available and easily discoverable online. The user experience is maximized when research is found within the context of the journal, rather than finding stand-alone papers in a third-party repository. Authors want the most reliable version to be used and cited for future research, and as AIAA is the premier provider of information on aerospace technology, engineering, and science, ARC remains the best source. Additionally, citation data, impact factor, and other usage metrics important to authors are most reliably measured and reported by promoting access to the article VOR.

Publishing with AIAA supports all authors by providing infrastructure, tools, and features to display, preserve, and protect content, and to ensure it is discoverable by the research community.

  • A persistent DOI (digital object identifier) is assigned to each article for perpetual access to the VOR
  • Article metadata are automatically deposited to CrossRef  for tracking, linking, and discovery
  • The use of CrossMark allows article revisions to be implemented and the most recent version to be maintained
  • Content is automatically deposited in CLOCKSS (a sustainable, geographically distributed dark archive) to ensure preservation of and access to scholarly content in perpetuity
  • AIAA supports author compliance with the CrossRef Open Funder Registry (formerly FundRef), to capture standardized funder names and grant numbers, which is critical to efficient tracking of funded research
  • Use of ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) is encouraged to disambiguate authors

AIAA is a member of CHORUS (Clearinghouse for the Open Research of the United States), which monitors and reports on funded research across agencies, supports agency search portals, and leverages existing publisher infrastructure where open access content is available. CHORUS not only links to accepted versions of articles deposited under mandate in participating agency repositories, but also links to the version of record available from AIAA. An explanation of benefits CHORUS provides to the public can be found here

All journal authors, regardless of open access status, are offered the flexibility to choose among all of AIAA’s long-standing copyright licensing options, which are intended to protect content and support the rights of our authors. AIAA prefers to hold the copyright of any work it publishes, but there are circumstances where an author or an employer wishes to retain copyright of the work. In such cases, AIAA accepts a license to publish the work and to use it for all of AIAA’s current and future print and electronic uses. AIAA also provides the option for Government authors (and Government contractors, as appropriate) to declare their submissions to be works of the U.S. Government.  Further details about AIAA copyright assignment can be found here.

How is the version of record (VOR) defined for a journal article? The VOR for AIAA journal articles is the Ahead of Issue version that is published in Aerospace Research Central (ARC) once editing and formatting are complete and all author corrections have been incorporated. A DOI is assigned and the date of publication is available for citation. This version ultimately is assigned a volume and issue number once the collection of articles in an issue is compiled, and is the article version that AIAA guarantees to be the most up-to-date.

Are conference papers and other AIAA publications subject to the federal public access mandate? At this time, only articles submitted to peer-reviewed scholarly journals are subject to the federal mandate.

Is open access available in Aerospace Research Central (ARC) for AIAA conference papers? Open access currently is offered only for AIAA’s peer-reviewed journal content.

What version of my journal article can I post on my personal website or in an archive to meet my employer’s or my funding agency’s requirements? AIAA permits authors to post their accepted manuscripts for personal use or to meet mandate requirements. The final edited and formatted version of the article should not be distributed. We ask authors to include full citation information for the final, version of record located in Aerospace Research Central (ARC), including the DOI.

My research is funded by an agency subject to the public access mandate; how do I comply with the deposit requirement? The payment of publisher OA fees by authors or their institutions is typically an allowable cost under most federal research grants and contracts, but it does not fulfill the federal public access mandate. Upon publication of your AIAA journal article, you will be notified of the publication date and the article DOI. This citation information should accompany your article submission (the accepted manuscript) to the appropriate agency archive within the time-frame specified (typically within 12 months of the date of publication). AIAA cannot provide specific instructions on how to deposit articles as the requirements will depend on the funding agency.

What is the difference between green and gold open access (OA)? Green OA permits the archiving of accepted, peer-reviewed content in institutional or subject-based OA repositories, as well as posting on personal or internal departmental websites, sometimes following an embargo period. Gold OA permits the online publication of the final edited and formatted version of an article (the version of record) immediately upon publication.

My university library is asking me to post my article in their archive; is this permitted? Many universities and institutional libraries encourage or require their publishing authors to archive their work in internal repositories, regardless of copyright ownership. AIAA’s author posting policy permits authors to comply, so long as the accepted manuscript is included in the archive (not AIAA’s final version of record), and the content is not for sale; the article should include the VOR DOI or a link back to the version on AIAA’s site.

Can I post my article on ResearchGate? Open social collaboration networks such as ResearchGate are useful author tools; however, their purpose is not consistent with AIAA’s author posting policy. Authors are allowed to post their accepted journal manuscripts on ResearchGate and similar sites only in cases where AIAA is not the copyright owner of the content. A bibliographic listing with links back to the version of record in Aerospace Research Central (ARC) is permitted.

What is the OA fee? The OA article processing charge (APC) is $2,500 for immediate open access upon publication. This voluntary fee reflects the value of the free access to the article, regardless of article type.