I am completely new to LaTeX, but I know how to use the chemstyles package to generate the standard state plimsoll in a document that I am working on for, say, my students, etc. However, for generating an ACS article, the standard state symbol does not seem to work when I use the achemso package.

Example code:


\title{A title}


$$\Delta_\mathrm{rxn} G^\standardstate$$


Changing the documentclass to article fixes the issue. Is there a way to generate the standard state symbol simply with the achemso package?

  • 3
    Forget chemstyle. Chemmacros package is what you need. Have a look the manual and search standard state.
    – Spaceship
    Jun 13, 2019 at 3:35
  • Thanks so much! I'll dig through the manual for chemmacros now; I found chemstyles via google search but haven't looked at the other chem packages yet. Thanks again!
    – J. Spencer
    Jun 13, 2019 at 3:59

2 Answers 2


It looks like a clash between achemso and chemstyle packages. Since ACS guidelines only strongly encourage to use achemso, the functionality of chemstyle (which also hasn't been updated since 2013) can be replicated by other means. Since ACS suggests to

Avoid extensive use of \newcommand and \def

I'm not listing any methods of creating own symbol (see e.g. How to draw a Plimsoll? on latex.org).

Method 1. Use \standardstate from chemmacros's symbols module

Plimsoll symbol with chemmacros package


\title{A title}




Method 2. Use \minuso from stmaryrd package

Plimsoll symbol with stmaryrd package


\title{A title}




Method 3. Use \stst from plimsoll package

Note: aside from \stst macro which is probably the optimal choice for chemists and is a recommended way of typesetting standard state symbol listed in The Comprehensive LaTeX Symbol List (accessed 2021-05-22), package plimsoll offers options for sans serif version of “⦵” symbol (sans) and redefinition of \circ macro to display plimsoll symbol (circ). If the symbol is used for a purpose different from denoting standard state, there is a more semantically correct \plimsoll macro (for use in math mode).

Plimsoll symbol with plimsoll package


\title{A title}



Kudos to Linear Christmas for the suggestion to include the package to this list!

Method 4. Use xelatex and a Unicode font with a support for glyph

Note: probably the least portable method and not recommended for ACS submissions. Requires to bundle extra font or make absolutely sure the font is installed on a target system, and uses a compiler different from pdflatex.

Plimsoll symbol with Unicode

% !TEX program = xelatex

    \setmainfont{STIX Two Text}
    \setmathfont{STIX Two Math}

\title{A title}



  • 2
    (+1) Greetings, andselisk! If you wish, you may add information about the package plimsoll. The usage is $G\stst$, $c\stst$, so no ^ required. ("stst" is for standard state). The package has additional and optional arguments sans and circ to change the standard state symbol appearance. For more information, see documentation. It is also in "The Comprehensive LATEX Symbol List", May 5, 2021 version, page 126: picture. May 22, 2021 at 15:45
  • 1
    @LinearChristmas Thank you very much for the suggestion, gratefully accepted and edited in. Unfortunately, I missed this newer package and I failed to update the answer in time:(
    – andselisk
    May 22, 2021 at 16:18

If you don't want to install a package just for the standard-state symbol, you can create a mock-up:


$ \Delta G = \Delta G^{\standardstate} + RT\ln(Q) $

Formula with Delta G-standard

A disadvantage is that the \kern-0.495em may need a bit of tweaking depending on the font. This works computer modern 11pt. In computer modern 12pt, use -0.47em; in 10pt, use -0.525em.

Use this for reports that you will distribute as PDF. Journals probably won't like this in submissions.

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