Submission procedure to the Materials Cloud Archive

  • Upon submission to the Materials Cloud Archive your record will be reviewed by the Materials Cloud moderators.
  • Your record should comply with the . You might be asked by the moderators to make some changes to your record. Please read the and the .
  • For research funded by one of our project partners, read the instructions on additional funding
  • The DOI associated to your record will resolve after your record has been approved. The DOI is unique per record and cannot be changed.
  • Once your record has been made public you can:
    • change at any time keywords and references.
    • submit a new version of the record. The new version will have a DOI different from the previous version.
  • Please note that the moderators have the right in exceptional cases to retract your record or to reject your submission if the record is not in accordance with the .
  • If you have any question about the submission procedure please contact us at:

Checklist for moderation of submissions

Last updated 2020-09-07.

  1. Records must contain relevant computational materials science data.

    • The main focus of the Archive is to host data that help reproducing the results discussed in scientific publications.
    • Experimental works are currently accepted only:
      - from authors affiliated with Materials Cloud partners, or
      - when the work relates to published computational results, e.g. confirming or disproving them.
  2. Title

    • Please only capitalize the first letter of the first word, not all words (except where English grammar requires it, e.g. for proper nouns).
  3. Description

    • The description should clarify the topic and purpose of the work, and briefly explain the contents of the dataset.
    • The description should be in the format of an abstract for a journal paper.
  4. Keywords

    • Records should specify 3 or more relevant keywords, not counting those related to funding (see next).
    • For research funded by MARVEL, MaX, SNSF, EPFL, Swissuniversities, MarketPlace, Intersect, ERC, NFFA, EMMC, PRACE, and/or PASC, the record should add these funding .
    • Keywords are not case-sensitive.
  5. Authors' affiliations

    • Affiliations should include the name of the institute/faculty/department, the name of the university or research center and the location. E.g. Theory and Simulation of Materials (THEOS), École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
  6. References

    • There should be at least one reference to a journal article or preprint (even under review or in preparation).
    • The citation style should be: N. Surname, N. Surname, Journal VOLUME, PAGES (YEAR). [Example: A. Einstein, Ann. Physik 11, 170-187 (1903)]
    • If a journal article or preprint is published, a DOI (in the format e.g. 10.1038/s41565-017-0035-5) and a permalink must be provided and must resolve correctly.
    • If a journal article or preprint is not yet published, the citation text must end with "(accepted)", "(submitted)", "(in preparation)" or a similar note. In this case the DOI, the permalink, and the Journal's name are optional. The author should remember to update the reference when the article or preprint is published.
    • MARVEL-funded research should eventually link to open-access papers or arXiv preprints (NB: this is a MARVEL policy, not an Archive policy).
  7. Files

    • None of the files must contain the paper itself or any of its supplementary materials. Individual plots and tables are acceptable as part of a larger archive of files.
    • Copyright: Authors affirm that they have the legal right to publish what they submit. In case of doubt about some files, moderators will point this out to the authors (but the responsibility remains with them).
      • If the file in question is already published on the arXiv, assume that it’s fine.
      • In exceptional cases, it is possible to add a copyright notice to the file description and/or to the abstract.
    • Files should be open file formats where available ( and should strive to be F.A.I.R. (
    • All files should be accompanied by one-line descriptions of file contents.
    • Large files should be compressed (e.g. .zip, .tar.gz -- avoid proprietary compression formats).
    • When appropriate, detailed contents should be described in a separate file README.txt/.md/.rst placed outside the archives.
    • All files names should have an extension.
    • File size limits (total): 5 GB in general, 50 GB for AiiDA databases. Well motivated exceptions are possible: write to

  8. For a full list of moderation policies and guidelines, see:

Materials Cloud Moderation Policies

v1.3, September 2020

Purpose of moderation

The Materials Cloud Archive is a research data repository for the computational materials science community. With this goal in mind, submissions should be of computational materials science data, or experimental data that relates to published computational results. Submissions can also include codes, simulations tools, and AiiDA workflows related to computational materials science.

A minimal level of moderation helps to ensure that its content is relevant to these goals. The moderation policies described below are inspired by those of the arXiv preprint server.

What criteria do moderators use?

Materials Cloud moderators will decline or suggest the removal of submissions that violate the , including:

  • Unsuitable content: Submissions should provide data that is of value and could be used by other researchers in the field, for example data supporting a past, present or future refereed paper. Submissions that do not contain data produced by original or substantive research may be removed. The same applies to submissions that contain inflammatory or fictitious content, use mis-representative titles/abstracts/introductions, or submissions that are in need of significant review and revision.
  • Inappropriate form: Abstract-only submissions, presentations, announcements, or advertisements may be removed.
  • Inappropriate topic: Submissions that do not fall into the domain of computational materials science may be declined and redirected to a more appropriate repository, where applicable. Experimental materials science submissions can be accepted if one of the following criteria is met:
    • the work relates to published computational results, e.g. confirming or disproving them;
    • one or more authors are affiliated with the Materials Cloud partners.
  • Duplicated content: If a moderator notices that a new submission is really a revision of a recent submission, the moderator may request that the user consolidates the new submission into a replacement of the previous submission. This helps ensure that Materials Cloud is as useful as possible for readers, and it can often help authors to present a more unified body of research.
  • Excessive submission rate: Data submitted to Materials Cloud must be of refereeable quality, and there is a practical limit to the rate at which appropriate, independent submissions can be produced by any one person. Moderators may request that any particular author limit his or her submission rate.
  • Submission of copyrighted material: Submitting authors must hold copyright over the entirety of the submission when the files are uploaded to Materials Cloud.

Can I appeal a moderation decision?

If you disagree with a moderation decision, you should submit an appeal that explains your arguments clearly and succinctly.

  • Send a detailed email, including all relevant information (especially submission ids, former correspondence, etc.) to
  • Moderators are not referees and do not provide detailed feedback on submissions. Administrators thus cannot provide detailed feedback regarding submissions deemed inappropriate, and will not enter into extended discussion regarding submissions.
  • Please be patient, as moderation appeals are complex and may take some time.
  • In rare cases we may require that a paper discussing the data be published in a conventional journal before an appeal is considered.

The appeals process allows moderators additional time to reconsider a submission, but repeated appeals with no additional information cannot be considered. If you send an appeal and the moderators reach the same decision as they did initially, no further appeal should be submitted.

Who are the Materials Cloud Archive moderators?

Materials Cloud moderators are volunteer subject specialists who have been approved by the Materials Cloud consortium.

Although the moderators may be publicly acknowledged, it is very inappropriate to contact any moderator directly regarding your submission. All communication about moderation decisions should be addressed to Moderators will not reply to personal correspondence regarding Materials Cloud submissions.

Current and past moderators of the Materials Cloud Archive are:

  • Nicola Marzari, EPFL
  • Giovanni Pizzi, EPFL (2017 - 2019)
  • Leopold Talirz, EPFL (2017 - present)
  • Valeria Granata, EPFL (2019 - present)
  • Marco Borelli, EPFL (2019 - present)
  • Jinhui Guo, EPFL (2019 - 2020)

The Materials Cloud Archive is an open-access, repository for research data in computational materials science. Submissions to the Materials Cloud Archive are expected to be of interest, relevance, and value to the field.


  • Suitable content: Submissions should provide data that is of value and could be used by other researchers in the field, for example data supporting a past, present or future peer-reviewed paper (see the for more details). References to preprints and/or published articles discussing the data are recommended but not required.
  • Withdrawal: If uploaded content must later be withdrawn, the reason for the withdrawal will be indicated on a tombstone page, which will henceforth be served in its place. Withdrawal is considered an exceptional action, which normally should be requested and fully justified by the original uploader. In any other circumstance reasonable attempts will be made to contact the original uploader to obtain consent. The DOI and the URL of the original object are retained.
  • Data file formats: All formats are allowed, even preservation unfriendly. Moderators may suggest alternative formats in line with the 5-star deployment scheme to open web data.
  • Volume and size limitations: 5 GB for general materials science research data, 50 GB for AiiDA databases. For larger datasets please contact us at
  • Metadata types and sources: Metadata is partly provided by the uploader and partly generated automatically (e.g. submission date, version). Metadata is stored internally in JSON format.

Access and Reuse


  • Versions: Records are versioned. Data files are not versioned.
  • Retention period: Items will be retained for the lifetime of the repository, but at least for 10 years after deposition (guaranteed by CSCS).
  • Immutability: Once published, records can no longer be modified without creating a new version. Exceptions to this rule are the "References" and "Keywords" fields, which may be updated a posteriori.
  • Fixity and authenticity: All data files are stored along with a MD5 checksum of the file content.
  • Succession plans: In case of closure of the repository, best efforts will be made to integrate all content into suitable alternative institutional and/or subject based repositories.

Acknowledgement: This document is loosely based on the policies of the zenodo research data repository and the arXiv preprint server.