Tips for Searching the Molecular Spectroscopy Archives

The OSU International Symposium on Molecular Spectroscopy has met annually for over 60 years. The subjects covered at the meeting include all experimental and theoretical aspects of rotational, vibrational, and electronic spectroscopy of molecules in the gas phase or in other environments providing relevant spectra. Also included are applications of molecular spectroscopy in related fields such as physics, chemistry, atmospheric science, astronomy, remote sensing and so on. This repository contains the abstracts of every paper presented at the Symposium.

NOTE: Those presentations without an abstract printed in the proceedings will not have an abstract (image or text) in the Knowledge Bank.

The purpose of this page is to provide additonal assistance for those searching for specific molecules, formulas, and other special characters within the abstracts, and for those who would like more information on browsing the abstracts.



The formulas and special characters appearing in titles and abstracts have been encoded with TeX, denoted with "$"'s around the expression, to facilitate searching.

The Essential LaTeX (PDF) provides a complete list of TeX characters used in the Symposium abstracts (beginning on page 20).

The Knowledge Bank uses the Lucene search engine. Lucene's query syntax page is helpful for general information about how searches are performed.

General Comments

In general, note and follow these instructions:

  • The default search in Knowledge Bank is an OR keyword search.
  • At this time, searches are not case-sensitive.
  • Use quotation marks around all search terms or phrases.

    example: "Intermolecular Forces"

    example: "H_2 O"

    example: "Abbate, Sergio" or "Abbate, S"

  • If searching expression found in an abstract, replace each "$" symbol with quotation marks.

    example: $Kr^{3+}$ becomes "Kr^{3+}" to search

    example: $^{1}\Sigma^{+}_{u}$ becomes "^{1}\Sigma^{+}_{u}" to search

    NOTE: If quotation marks are not used, the Knowledge Bank will return an Invalid search string error.

  • If, when searching a molecule, no hits are returned, try adding a space between any sub- or superscripted element in the search term because the search engine replaces "{" and "}" with spaces.

    example: "C_6H_6" returns 0 hits, but "C_6 H_6" returns 78 hits

Keyword Searching

The keyword search includes all authors, titles, dates, presentation numbers, and abstracts.

  • A year can be entered alone or with other terms to refine the search results.

    example: "NH_3" AND 1967

    example: 2001

    example: "GALBRAITH, H.W." NOT 1977

    To view a complete listing of all presentations in a given year, the Knowledge Bank allows browsing by year.

  • A presentation number can be entered to quickly find a specific abstract.

    example: 2004-WJ-11

    example: 1999-TA-04

    example: 1967-L-1

    example: 1955-D-4

Fielded Searching

To search for a term in a particular field, preface the term with the name of the field and a colon. For example, to search for "Lee" as an author, enter author:lee as the search query.

The fields that are indexed and can be specified in this manner are author, title, abstract, and id [presentation number].

example: author:"Vaccaro"

example: title:"RAMAN"

example: abstract:"3\nu_{3}" AND abstract:"K_{a}"

example: id:"1955-D-4"

TIP: For best results using an author search, combine a search for an author's full name with the author's last name and first initial.

example: author:"Hougen, Jon" OR author:"Hougen, J"


  • Boolean operators (AND, OR, NOT) must be ALL CAPS when used.

    example: Nafie AND 1990

    example: title:"H_ 2" NOT 1985

    example: "C_6 H_6" OR benzene

  • The Boolean operators "+" and "-" are also valid and must be used without spaces.


The "Issue Date," "Author," and "Title" options on the Symposium pages allow browsing by those fields.

Browsing by issue date provides a listing of presentations by year, showing the most recent first (which can be changed to view the oldest first). Entering a year on the browse date page will advance the list to the beginning of that year in the list.

Browsing by author provides an alphabetical list by last name. Selecting a name from this list will return hits regardless of case (i.e., LEE and Lee will return the same list of records).

Browsing by title provides an alphabetical list by title. Initial articles such as "An" and "The" are ignored. (i.e., "The Optimal Scale ..." will be listed after "Optimal Scalar ...").