Dear readers of physica status solidi,
A year past the 50th anniversary of the journal, pss continues to grow, flourish, and change based on strong roots. Here is a snapshot of the busy start of 2013:
pss Founding Editor Prof. Karl Wolfgang Böer was awarded an honorary doctoral degree from Technische Universität Berlin. Having started his career in Berlin in the 1960s, he has been a semiconductor physics and photovoltaics pioneer at the University of Delaware during more than three decades. A generous donation will contribute to the new Böer Chair for solid state physics at the department. We are proud to see our founder’s name honored, and convey our sincere thanks and best personal wishes to him!
Leaping to present content, a Focus Issue on Topological Insulators – From Materials Design to Reality  with Guest Editors Claudia Felser, Shoucheng Zhang, and Binghai Yan will kick-off Volume 7 of the journal pss (RRL). Nine Review@RRL overview articles on various aspects of this vibrating and quickly expanding field cover, for example, nanostructures  and the connection between topological insulators and thermoelectric materials . They are complemented by a similar number of Rapid Research Letter contributions with brand new results. Stay tuned also for further pss (RRL) Focus issues on topics such as semiconductor nanowires and novel two-dimensional layered materials on www.pss-rapid.com.
To accommodate the need of energy-related research for quality publications that keep the pace, pss (RRL) will expand its coverage of photovoltaics and solar cells in a regular section rrl solar. Several recent contributions on this high-impact topic have already reached beacon status [4–6]. We would like to see the community make itself at home, and are very happy to welcome Andres Cuevas (Australian National University, Canberra) and Uwe Rau (Research Center Jülich, Germany) as new members of our Editorial Advisory Board. So please submit your Letter manuscripts and Review@RRL proposals on important PV advances here!
The long-established full-paper journal pss a – applications and materials science opened a new category Advanced Materials Physics for outstanding work at the forefront and interface between solid state physics and materials science (see [7–9] for a set of examples on magnetoelectrics, nanophotonics and transparent conducting materials). It is partly edited in collaboration with our colleagues of the Wiley-VCH sister journals Advanced Materials and Advanced Functional Materials.
For the full-paper journals pss (a) and pss (b), we set out to further sharpen the profile of the existing overview article categories: Review Articles are our primary venue to provide a comprehensive and broad overview on the development and state-of-the-art of a particular topic, with a minimum length of 10 pages. Recent examples cover doping of organic semiconductors  and terahertz silicon laser physics . On the other hand, Feature Articles, as a more confined topical overview on typically 10–15 pages, give an authoritative summary of recent, currently relevant or specific aspects which may include important work done previously by the author as well as unpublished original results.
With the move of pss (RRL) to a full online journal, we can introduce a more convenient length limit for Rapid Research Letter submissions. In agreement with current publishing trends, manuscripts are now limited to a maximum length of 3000 words and 4 display items (figures or tables which should not be page-filling), yielding a typical paper length of 4 pages in the published article PDF. Unchanged remain the strict requirements towards significance, novelty, interest, quality and urgency of the presented research results, as well as the high speed of editorial handling and production. In 2012, average editorial decisions on later accepted manuscripts were taken within 17 days, and only 6 days were needed from acceptance to publication on Wiley Online Library. pss (RRL) remains very fast, further striving to be a highly appreciated peer-reviewed medium for the solid state physics research community.
pss a – applications and materials science and pss b – basic solid state physics have abandoned the traditional topical subheadings in the table of contents as they do no longer well represent the large spectrum of current research activities. While we will stay open to all relevant and interesting results from solid state physics, we will put more emphasis on ‘hot’ topics which may include, just for example, nano- and mesoscience, advanced materials and devices, oxide and carbon materials, spintronics and magnetoelectronics, multiferroics, photonics, and many more.
The recent expansion of in-house editorial activities beyond the traditional sites in Germany allows for intensified cooperation with the teams at the Wiley headquarter in Hoboken, NJ, USA and our new office in Beijing, China. While the pss Editorial Office home base will remain in Berlin, from now on pss will be internationally represented and supported by full-time editors based on three continents. More information will be available soon on our ‘Contacts’ page at www.pss-journals.com.
Last but not least, we are glad to announce that the online submission and refereeing system Editorial Manager will be introduced for pss in spring 2013. It will bring major technological advances. We are looking forward to much more convenient and efficient user experiences, both for your activities as well as for the editorial handling.
Looking forward to an exciting new year 2013,
With best wishes,
Sabine Bahrs, Ingeborg Stass, and Stefan Hildebrandt