Submission Instructions

Author submissions are done on-line through the ScholarOne Manuscript Central website. If you already have a login and password for IEEE Photonics Technology Letters, the IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics, the IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics, the IEEE Photonics Journal, or the IEEE Journal of Display Technologies, these credentials will also work on the IEEE/OSA Journal of Lightwave Technology site. Please check and refrain from creating duplicate accounts in the system. Please log into your Scholar One account and update your information regularly to keep your account information accurate.

Manuscript Preparation

All manuscripts must be submitted in a standard two-column, single-spaced format. Make sure to have all figures included within the text in order to get an accurate page count estimate, which is important for estimating publication costs. Please note that all figures must be sized to be clearly legible when printed. No font size used within a figure should be smaller than the default font size of the figure caption. Please only upload an MSWord document or a PDF, not a LaTex file. Various templates and detailed style guides may be found here:

Contributed submissions may be 7 pages in length,  optionally including author biographies, before incurring mandatory over length page charges (see below). Author photographs are not published. 

The abstract must be a concise yet comprehensive reflection of the main statements made in your article. In particular, the abstract must be self-contained, without abbreviations, footnotes, or references. The abstract must be written as one paragraph, and should not contain displayed mathematical equations or tabular material. The abstract should include three or four different keywords or phrases, as this will help search engines to better find your paper.

 Are you including a graphical abstract with your submission? If so, please review our author instructions for format, naming convention and size guidelines found here. Please be sure to name your file as detailed in these guidelines. Graphical Abstracts must be peer reviewed and cannot be added after acceptance.

Who Qualifies as a Co-author

As per IEEE regulations: , authorship credit must be reserved for individuals who have met all three of the following conditions:

a. Made a significant intellectual contribution to the theoretical development, system or experimental design, prototype development, and/or the analysis and interpretation of data assoiciated with the work contained in the article; AND

b. Contributed to drafting the article or reviewing and/or revising it for intellectual content; AND

c.  Approved the final version of the article as accepted for publication, including references. (This implies an agreement of accountability for the published work.)

Contributors who meet fewer than all 3 of the above criteria for authorship should not be listed as co-authors, but may be acknowledged. Examples of activities that alone (without the other three contributions) do not qualify a contributor for authorship are acquisition of funding; general supervision of a research group or general administrative support; and writing assistance, technical editing, language editing, and proofreading.

English as Your Second Language

If English is your second language, please be sure to either have a colleague proofread your paper or use professional editing services. You may find the following editing websites useful for a cost:

1. IEEE Professional Editing Services at

2. American Journal Experts at *IEEE authors receive a 10% discount

Please note that submissions that are hard to understand due to poor English will be immediately rejected.

Re-submissions of Previously Rejected Work

If your work is essentially a re-submission to JLT of work that has been previously been rejected either by JLT or by any other journal, please include with your submission:

  • The reviews previously received for the work
  • Your detailed response to those reviews
  • A marked-up version of your manuscript indicating the changes you have made following the original reviews

Failure to do so may result in your manuscript being immediately rejected without review.

Originality and (Self-)Plagiarism

All JLT manuscripts have to be original and the authors’ own body of work. An essentially similar copy of the same paper must not have been submitted nor must it be submitted at a later point in time to any other journal or conference. While IEEE and OSA do support evolutionary publishing of an author's own body of work, it is mandatory in such cases to (1) minimize direct 1:1 overlap in text and figures wherever possible, (2) properly reference the earlier paper(s) whenever copies of text and figures are made, and (3) highlight in the introduction the technical advances of the submission to JLT with respect to earlier work.

In order to determine whether your JLT submission contains enough new material compared to any of your previously published journal or conference, please self-assess whether a reader who has access to your JLT paper in addition to all of your previously published work would consider the JLT paper of significant added value. This is the guideline that our Editorial Board uses to determine whether or not a JLT submission contains enough new material or not. – Note that “significant added value” can take many forms, including a more elaborate placement into the context of previously reported results within a field, more elaborate technical descriptions, discussions, and interpretations of methods or results, results that go beyond those previously reported, important intermediate results or non-trivial derivations that were not previously shown, etc.

Please also check the following links for more information:

IEEE Plagiarism Guidelines

OSA Plagiarism Guidleines

Authors acknowledge adherence to these regulations through execution of the IEEE Copyright Form upon online submission through ScholarOne Manuscript Central.

All JLT submissions are expected to be self-contained. Their technical understanding must not rely on any unpublished material.

On-line Repositories (such as ArXiv)

When using on-line repositories (such as ArXiv), please note that (1) upon submission of an article to JLT, you must update any previously posted version of your submitted article with a prominently displayed IEEE copyright notice, and (2) upon publication of an article by JLT, you must replace any previously posted electronic versions of the article with either (a) the full citation to the JLT paper with it s Digital Object Identifier (DOI), or (b) the JLT accepted version with the DOI (not the IEEE-typeset version).  Upon your request, IEEE will make available toyou the preprint version of your article that you can post and that includes the DOI, IEEE's copyright notice, and a notice indicating the article has been accepted for publication in JLT.

Multimedia  and Other Supplemental Material

Upon acceptance of the manuscript, authors are encouraged to submit supplemental material in the form of:
a) Multimedia files - these will be linked to the paper and identified as such.
b) Other supplemental materials including: paper figures in ppt format; a related ppt conference presentation with its citation; additional derivations or explanations that are not essential to the understanding of the paper but that may help readers to reproduce you results more easily.
c) Author biographies

The author needs to indicate supplemental material in the final files submission and an Editor will reach out to get the correct files for upload onto IEEExplore and linking to the paper.

To enhance the appearance of your article on IEEEXplore®, a graphical abstract can be displayed along with traditional text. The graphical abstract should provide a clear, visual summary of your article’s findings by means of an image, animation, video, or audio clip. NOTE: The graphical abstract is considered a part of the technical content of the article, and you must provide it for peer review during the article submission process. For more information about graphical abstracts and their specifications, please visit the following link:

Review Process

Upon submission, your manuscript will be checked for formal template compliance before the Editor-in-Chief examines the paper for scope compliance, language proficiency, as well as basic technical content and novelty. Out-of-scope papers as well as papers of insufficient technical content or quality may be immediately rejected upon consultation within the Editorial Board. After passing these initial editorial steps, the Editor-in-Chief assigns your manuscript to an Associate Editor who is an expert in the respective paper’s topic area. Authors also have the opportunity to suggest a preferred Associate Editor (or to exclude certain Associate Editors as "non-preferred") in the ScholarOne Manuscripts submission tool. We will always honor non-preferred Associate Editor selections if these are based on clear precedence that could lead to a potentially biased review process. (The mere fact that an Associate Editor may also be a competitor working in the exact same field as your paper is not a reason for exclusion.) We will try to honor preferred Associate Editor choices, but only if your preferences make technical sense and if the current Associate Editor workload permits the assignment. The Associate Editor selects a minimum of two reviewers who are experts in the field of your paper. As with Associate Editors, you may designate preferred and non-preferred reviewers upon on-line submission. As with Associate Editor preferences, we will always honor your non-preferred selections if based on clear precedence that could lead to a potentially biased review, and we will try to honor your preferred reviewer choices based on technical expertise and reviewer workloads. Authors can track the status of their submission at any time through ScholarOne Manuscripts. Please note that all technical work performed in this paper handling process, including all work performed by the Editor-in-Chief, the Deputy Editors, the Associate Editors, and the Reviewers, is based on volunteers. While we constantly strive to keep reviewing times to a minimum, we place strong emphasis on technical quality. The average turn-around time (from submission to first decision) is currently below 40 days.

JLT allows for two revision cycles. Should your manuscript require more than two revisions, it may be rejected, but you are welcome to resubmit in case you can fully address all reviewer concerns.

Once accepted, your paper will be placed on-line on IEEEXplore within 2-3 days and can be fully referenced at that point using the digital object identifier (DOI), even if it hasn’t yet appeared in a printed JLT issue.

Publication Charges

JLT provides authors with two publication options following the hybrid open access publication model:

  • Open-access publishing: Here, authors pay one-time publication charges, which make their paper accessible free-of-charge to anybody with an Internet connection (such as used by OSA's OpticsExpress or the IEEE Photonics Journal).​

Open access charges are as follows:

  • $1,950.00 per article up to 7 pages (includes 15% discount for IEEE Sponsoring Society Members)
  • $1662.50 per article up to 7 pages (5% discount for IEEE Members)
  • $1,750 per article up to 7 pages (undiscounted base rate)
  • Overlength page charges: $260.00 per page in excess of 7 pages
  • The color charge fee structure has been simplified to a flat $275 USD per printed color figure.  
  • Traditional subscriber-based publishing: Here, authors pay voluntary page charges of $110.00 per page up to 7 pages. A mandatory fee of $260.00 applies to every page in excess of 7 pages. IEEE and OSA make the papers available through individual or library-based subscription services through IEEEXplore and OpticsInfobase.

Note that due to its denser typesetting, one JLT page is equivalent, on average, to about 1.6 pages in other open-access journals such as the IEEE Photonics Journal or OSA’s Optics Express

Applicable taxes will be added to all Open Access, Overlength ,Voluntary page charges as well as reprint orders at time of processing for bill to addresses in Canada and in all European Union countries. Bill to customers who are VAT registered in European Union countries will not have tax added when they provide their VAT registration number.

The Journal of Lightwave technology is NOT an accept-Pay -publish journal.