In my bachelor's thesis, I need to use a citation style that has the following output for a reference:

N. Talebi, “Strong Interaction of Slow Electrons with Near-Field Light Visited from First Principles,” Physical Review Letters 125, 080401 (2020)

An example .bib file looks like this:

  title={Strong interaction of slow electrons with near-field light visited from first principles},
  author={Talebi, Nahid},
  journal={Physical Review Letters},

I could not find a filling for \citationstyle{} that has this result. All the styles I have tried did not have quotation marks in the title ("title"). Do you know the right style to output this citation style? Additionally, I was also wondering: why is the page number so weird? 080401 does not sound like a page number to me.

  • For the page number aspect, yes that is fairly typical at least in my field of science, the page numbers do not necessarily make sense or read like conventional page numbers e.g. 756-764. If this .bib file was downloaded from the cite this of the article online, then it is the correct page number.
    – user245306
    Apr 28, 2022 at 20:55
  • but how can this number be deciphered then ? Or what is its use case when it is not a conventional page number ? Apr 28, 2022 at 21:16
  • 1
    @petermafai From what I understand, the page number has to be read like "page group 080401" (which contains pages 080401-1, 080401-2, ... - you can see this numeration if you take a look at the pdf): journals.aps.org/prl/pdf/10.1103/PhysRevLett.125.080401
    – TiMauzi
    Apr 28, 2022 at 21:54
  • Isn't there any guide from the university/department? Do people just want students to guess the standards they are supposed to follow? Nevertheless, I know some universities don't name standards, they just say how they want, but not what they want. I just can't accept they think students are supposed to do not only their research but also guess this kind of information.
    – FHZ
    Apr 29, 2022 at 22:02

2 Answers 2


The closest citation style in BibTeX that I could find is the "IEEE Transactions" style (\bibliographystyle{ieeetr}), actually containing quotation marks:

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This style still does not exactly look like the example citation you wrote down. You may want to switch to BibLaTeX for further customization, since you have better access to additional options there. This difference between BibTeX and BibLaTeX is also explained here: https://tex.stackexchange.com/a/68988/205359

Concerning your second question, the "page number" in your case is more of a "collection of pages". You can picture the given paper as having the collection identifier 080401. If you take a closer look at the paper itself (e.g. the PDF), you quickly see that this collection is then divided into actual page numbers: 080401-1, 080401-2, ..., 080401-6.


This style is exactly the one used by APS (American Physical Society) journals. As you perhaps don't want to switch to the whole RevTeX stuff, you could use the derived Optica's (former OSA for Optical Society of America) style file, named osajnl.bst, to be downloaded from its website.

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