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Air University Press

Introduction to the Press

About Us 

Air University (AU) Press, Air University at Maxwell AFB, Alabama, publishes scholarly books, journals, faculty research, student papers selected by AU schools, and the Air University Catalog and other administrative documents for AU. Airpower scholars and students use our publications throughout the world.

AU Press seeks manuscripts from both military and civilian writers on such topics as

• air, space, and cyber power doctrine and strategy;

• the nature and future of air, space, and cyber power’s role in warfare and peace;

• the history of air, space, and cyber power;

• case studies of the employment of air, space, and cyber power at all levels of conflict;

• international relations, regional security studies, and strategic issues;

• the Space Force; and

• biographies and leadership studies of air, space, and cyber power personalities, pioneers, units, theorists, leaders, and commanders.

Authors may submit manuscripts on these topics to the AU Publication Review Board for consideration. See the submission instructions in this guide.

AU Press publishes several series of research papers: Maxwell Papers from the Air War College, Wright Flyers from the Air Command and Staff College, Walker Papers from the Air Force Fellows Program, and Drew Papers—theses by students at the School of Advanced Air and Space Studies (SAASS).

AU Press also produces four professional journals.  The Air and Space Power Journal (ASPJ) is the professional flagship journal of the Air Force. Strategic Studies Quarterly (SSQ) serves as a forum to exchange strategic-level ideas about national and international security policy and defense strategy. The final two journals, Journal of the Americas and The Air Force Journal of Indo-Pacific Affairs, focus on regional specific topics concerning airpower. For specific submission instructions, see the journals’ respective websites: Air & Space Power JournalStrategic Studies Quarterly, Journal of the Americas, or Journal of Indo-Pacific Affairs.

For more information about our publications currently in print, please see our list of recent publications: https://www.airuniversity.af.edu/AUPress/Articles/. All of our publications, including many no longer in print, are available in electronic formats from our website. DOD personnel may obtain copies of books in print by visiting our bookstore in the front lobby of the AU Library, located at 600 Chennault Circle on Maxwell AFB, calling us at 334-953-2773 e-mailing us at AirUniversityPress@au.af.edu Selected publications are also available from the US Government Printing Office.

Payment to Authors

Air University Press does not pay for the manuscripts it publishes. In some cases, however, sponsoring agencies may commission manuscripts for publication by AU Press. If appropriate, payment is negotiated between an author and the sponsoring agency. If you are a government employee who has written a manuscript as part of your job; has used government time, equipment, supplies, or facilities to do so; or has composed a study based on knowledge gained through official duties, then government laws and regulations prohibit you from accepting payment for your work.


If you are a government employee who writes a manuscript as part of your job, you cannot own the copyright to that manuscript. By law, no copyright exists, and the manuscript is in the public domain. If you are not a government employee and AU Press publishes your manuscript, you retain the copyright. However, the publishing agreement you will sign with AU Press gives the Air Force unlimited rights to publish and distribute your manuscript in print and electronically. As the copyright owner, you may also give the manuscript to a commercial publisher, but your agreement with that publisher cannot restrict the Air Force's rights to publish and distribute your manuscript. For additional details, see the AU Press publishing agreement in the "Essential Forms" section.

Classified and Sensitive Material

As a rule, AU Press does not process or publish classified material. If you believe that your project merits an exception to this rule, please notify us as early in the development process as possible.

Before submitting a manuscript to AU Press, make sure it contains no classified or sensitive information (e.g., inspector general reports or other documents marked “Controlled Unclassified Information", Social Security numbers,PII, etc.). Do not cite classified information or the titles of classified documents (whether in the text, notes, bibliography, etc.). Do not include information of a personal nature (e.g., mentioning the name of your spouse and/or children, your place of birth, etc., in the acknowledgments or a biographical sketch).

Security and Policy Review

AU Press publications must undergo security clearance and policy review to ensure that they contain no classified and sensitive information and do not misrepresent current Air Force policy. Normally, the public affairs (PA) office here at Maxwell completes the review, but DOD-affiliated authors may have their manuscript cleared by their local PA office. If you do so, please provide us with the clearance/case number assigned by that office.

The Publication Process


Process Length 

A number of variables affect our publication process (see the figure below). These include the manuscript’s length and quality, your availability to work with the editor, the workload and priorities of the press team assigned to your project, and the number of manuscripts already in AU Press’s production queue. The following schedule shows typical production times once the editing process begins:

• Book 8 to 12 months

• Drew Paper 4 to 5 months

• Wright Flyer Paper 3 to 4 months

• Walker Paper 3 to 4 months

Accepted Manuscripts 

If AU Press decides to publish your manuscript, we will notify you to submit the final files according to the instructions in the following section. Once we have received your final files and confirmed that they meet our submission specifications, we will put your manuscript in our production queue and send a publishing agreement as outlined in appendix A of the Air University Style and Author Guide for you to read, sign, and return to us. This document specifies, among other things, the obligations of both you and the Air Force as they pertain to the publication of your work.

An editor will contact you when your manuscript is assigned to him or her. Most AU Press production teams include a project editor, copy editor, quality reviewer, illustrator, and typesetter. The illustrator will prepare your figures for printing and develop a cover design. The editors will edit the manuscript according to the Air University Style and Author Guide and the Chicago Manual of Style. You will then review those edits and work with the project editor to resolve all editorial issues. This is your last opportunity to make changes to your manuscript. After this stage, we will correct only errors of fact, grammar, spelling, or typography.

Figure. General work flow



The manuscript will then undergo a quality review and be typeset. Once the manuscript is typeset, the project editor will thoroughly proofread the typeset page proofs. You will receive a PDF of the page proofs for review. Normally you will have only a short time to review the page proofs and submit corrections of fact, grammar, spelling, or typography. After all corrections have been made, the manuscript will be prepared for printing (subject to budgetary constraints). We usually receive hard copies of a book four to six weeks after the files are submitted to the printer.

Submitting Manuscripts


All manuscripts must comply with the Air University Style and Author Guide, which is based on the Chicago Manual of Style, 17th edition. If you are interested in publishing a manuscript through AU Press, please read this section carefully. We cannot accept manuscripts that are not submitted according to the procedures described here.

Submitting a Manuscript to the Publication Review Board

To have a manuscript considered by the AU Publication Review Board, please email an electronic copy of the document—preferably as a Microsoft Word attachment— to the Air University Press Director. Also, include a brief note that identifies your potential audience, describes your project’s value to the Air Force, and tells us about your background and expertise.

Submitting an Accepted Manuscript for Publication

If we accept your manuscript for publication, we will ask you to assemble all of your manuscript materials for final submission. All files should be submitted electronically on two CDs—one for text files and one for images. (Original images may be submitted by mail.) Please submit the following items, which are discussed in detail below.

  • A complete manuscript, properly formatted according to the requirements of the Air University Style Guide for Writers and Editors (AU-1)
  • ​Original images or an individual file for each electronic image
  • An AU Press illustrations log in appendix C of AU-1, including copies of permissions for all images not in the public domain
  • A photo of you for the “About the Author” page and, if desired, the back cover
  • A list of any other publications you may have written
  • A list of your social media profiles and platforms
  • Written permission to reproduce any copyrighted material
  • A distribution list for mailing copies of your publication
  • For books, a seed list for an index
  • Your date of birth (used by the Library of Congress to prepare cataloging in publication data)

Formatting Your Manuscript

  • Submit electronic files of the complete manuscript.
  • Do not use templates, embedded styles for the table of contents or index, or similar desktop-publishing features.
  • Create a separate file for the front matter (e.g., contents, foreword, preface, etc.), each chapter, and each part of the back matter (e.g., appendixes, glossary/list of abbreviations, bibliography, etc.).
  • Do not embed illustrations in the text files. Instead, submit them as separate electronic files (see “Formatting and Submitting Tables and Illustrations,” below), and put a caption indicating where they should be placed in the text. However, you may embed tables in the text files.
  • Use a 12-point font and double spacing. Frontmatter, notes, and back matter should be double spaced as well.
  • Place notes at the end of each chapter (endnotes), not at the bottom of each page (footnotes). They should be double-spaced and in 12-point font. Use your word processor’s “insert endnote” feature to “embed” the notes to enable automatic renumbering when you add, delete, or move notes. We will not accept manuscripts whose endnotes are not embedded.
  • Ensure that your hierarchy of subheadings is consistent (see part 1, Air University Style Guide for Writers and Editors, 1.60). Do not use numbered subheadings.
  • Check all quotations against sources and supply complete documentation for endnotes and the bibliography.
  • All notes and bibliography entries must be formatted according to this style guide (see part 1 of AU-1, appendixes A and B).
  • Provide translations or paraphrases of foreign-language passages in parentheses following the passage. For foreign-language titles in the endnotes or bibliography, put the translations in brackets.

Formatting and Submitting Tables and Illustrations

  • Failure to follow these instructions may cause significant delays in the production process. If you have any questions or need assistance, please call Air University Press’s illustrators at commercial 334-953-3041 / DSN 493-3041 or commercial 334-953-3042 / DSN 493-3042.
  • When you submit your illustrations (graphs, charts, photos, maps, artwork, etc.), you must submit an AU Press illustrations log in appendix C of AU1 with all relevant information about each image. You can download the log from the instructions for authors on the AU Press website. 
  • Submit high-resolution digital images (300 dpi or higher .tiff files) or original images such as photos, maps, or figures (line art). Note that GIF and BMP files are generally not acceptable for printing because of their low resolution.
  • If you scan your images, please keep the following principles in mind. To ensure that the file contains enough data to reproduce accurately, please use high-end black-and-white or color-calibrated scanning equipment. Scan all images (color and grayscale) at a resolution of at least  300 pixels per inch, based on an input-to-output (I/O) size ratio of 1 to 1. All enlargements or reductions applied to images should adjust the pixels proportionately. For example, a 3-by-5-inch original photograph printed at 3-by-5 inches (I/O ratio of one to one) should be scanned at 266 to 300 pixels per inch. The same-sized photo printed at 6-by-10 inches (I/O ratio of one to two) should be scanned at 532 to 600 pixels per inch. Save your images either as uncompressed TIFF (tagged image file format), native Photoshop file format (.psd), or EPS (encapsulated postscript) files. JPEG files may be submitted, provided they are saved at the highest-quality setting.
  • Images scanned at lower resolutions and then forced or pushed to a higher resolution to meet printing standards become blurry. For example, this happens if you change an image from 150 pixels per inch to 300 pixels per inch in your image-editing program. Instead, you should rescan the image at the target resolution of 300 pixels per inch. Although you can reduce digital images to the desired resolution, you should never increase them to a higher resolution to meet printing standards.
  • Do not import images into another document, such as Microsoft Word for submission. Submit images as individual files only.
  • Scan all line art as bitmap images with a resolution of between 1,200 and 2,540 pixels per inch, based on an I/O ratio of 1 to 1. Enlargements and reductions are similarly proportional. Save the images either as uncompressed TIFF, native Photoshop file format, or EPS files.
  • Please send us a current photo of you for the “About the Author” section and your book’s back cover. More than one pose is permissible. The picture for “About the Author” should be black and white; the back cover should be color. 
  • Tables should be numbered consecutively throughout the manuscript (e.g., Table 1, Table 2, etc.) and embedded in the text file below their captions. If a credit line is needed, place it below the table.

    Table 2. Bomb strikes during the Battle of the Bismarck Sea [place the caption above the table] Reprinted from Air Evaluation Board, Southwest Pacific Area, “Battle of the Bismarck Sea and Development of Masthead Attacks,” 1 July 1945, 47, Air Force Historical Research Agency, Maxwell AFB, AL. [place credit line below the table]

    See 1.62 of part 1 of AU-1 for information about formatting tables.
  • All illustrations—figures, charts, photos, maps, and the like—should be submitted as separate files (one illustration per file), not embedded in the manuscript. Number the illustrations consecutively throughout the document and include the illustration number in the file title (e.g., Figure1.psd). Indicate each illustration’s placement in the text by including its number and caption in the text (e.g., following the paragraph in which you refer to the illustration). For example,

    Figure 9. Cutaway view of the B-25G. (Reprinted from North American Aviation, “Train Dispatcher,” Saturday Evening Post, 4 November 1944, 107.)
  • If you have a list of illustrations and a list of tables, include each list (titled “Illustrations” and “Tables” [without the quotation marks])on a separate page, following the table of contents. Cite these items in the table of contents as “List of Illustrations” and “List of Tables” (without the quotation marks). 
  • Our artists design and create attractive covers for our publications. Although we reserve the right to make final artistic decisions about your book’s cover, our illustrators will be happy to work with you to bring your ideas about the artwork to fruition. Please send us your notes and/or sketches and contact our illustrators at commercial 334-953-3041 / DSN 493-3041 or commercial 334-953-3042 / DSN 493-3042.

Seed List for Index

  • Most AU Press books (but not research papers) have an index.
  • Because the author knows best what terms a reader would find useful in an index; the author is responsible for providing a “seed list”: an alphabetized list of key terms that an AUPress editor uses to prepare an index. See 1.37 in AU-1 for more guidance on indexing.


  • When you sign your publishing agreement with us, you guarantee that your work is original. Therefore, if you use copyrighted text, graphics, or pictures, you must obtain written permissions from the rights holders and submit copies to us, along with instructions from the rights holders concerning credit lines and publication limitations. You are also responsible for the payment of any necessary fees to the rights holders. After we begin editing your manuscript, we will contact you as soon as possible if we think you need to obtain additional permissions.
  • You do not need to obtain permission if the material you use is in the public domain or if you comply with the doctrine of fair use of copyrighted material. For further information on such material, see part 1 of AU-1, appendix C.
  • Copyright law does not set precise boundaries for fair use. Ultimately the author is responsible for not violating copyright law. However, AU Press has adapted the fair use guidelines that the University of Chicago Press offers for the use of its publications, available on the University of Chicago Press’s Website.
  • Quotations for the traditional scholarly purposes of criticism, argument, and illustration are of fair use.
  • However, reproducing more than 5,000 words from a source, more than 5 percent of a reference, or a complete poem, song, or other literary work is probably not fair use.
  • Reproduction of complete graphical units (charts, images, photos, maps, etc.) requires permission. AU Press will not publish a copyrighted graphic unless the author obtains written permission to reproduce it and supplies a copy of the authorization to AU Press.
  • If you believe a graphic falls under the doctrine of fair use (e.g., a photograph used to facilitate commentary on techniques of photographic composition or a single graph, table, or chart that includes no pictorial elements and merely presents data), you may ask AU Press to consider an exception to the above policy.
  • In the case of material developed for coursework, the office of primary responsibility in the using organization is responsible for reviewing permissions. They should ensure that the use of the copyrighted material adheres to any limitations or requests indicated by the rights-holder (see Air Force Instruction [AFI] 33-360, Publications and Forms Management; and AFI 51-303, Intellectual Property—Patents, Patent-Related Matters, Trademarks and Copyrights.
  • Because obtaining permissions can take a long time, begin requesting them early in the process of preparing your manuscript.

Distribution List

  • We will provide you 25 copies of your book free of charge. We will send them all to you, or if you submit a list of names and addresses of people or organizations, we will send them on your behalf. However, these provisions are subject to budgetary constraints.


• Use the author checklist in appendix B of AU-1 to compile your submission. Please email all materials to the Air University Press Director. If unable to submit digitally, then send by mail to: 

Air University Press Director
Muir S. Fairchild Research Information Center
600 Chennault Circle, Building 1405 
Maxwell AFB, Alabama 36112-6010