A brief overview of most useful resources for physics research online:
Most complete physics resource. Over 13 million records, international in scope, in all fields of physics, materials science, computer science, and engineering.
• Much greater historical backlog (starting 1898)
• Coverage much broader than arXiv
• Coverage contains published works not found in GS
• Basic searching not as “smart” as Google Search
This service can be used to find articles from a wide variety of academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories and universities, as well as scholarly articles available across the web. It has the fastest, simplest interface.
• Fewer clicks
• Very smart, very flexible unstructured searching (you can copy and pasted citations into the search box)
• Shows multiple versions of each article in multiple publications (when available)
• Includes non-peer-reviewed publications (including the arXiv)
• Includes Google Books (some full text)
• Less comprehensive than Inspec, especially for older materials
ADS (SMITHSONIAN/NASA ASTROPHYSICS DATA SYSTEM)
A Digital Library portal for research in Astronomy and Physics.
• Highly customizable searching
• Broad coverage of physics topics
• Searches all of arXiv
• May not include all the materials covered by Inspec
WEB OF SCIENCE (SCIENCE CITATION INDEX EXPANDED)
Indexes major journals in science disciplines.
• Very good cited literature search features
• Goes back to 1900
• Does not have the depth of coverage of INSPEC or ADS
Cutting-edge preprint server for many (but not all) major physics fields. HOW TO GET TO IT
• Most up-to-date resource
• Always full text
• Always free
• Shows today’s papers
• No peer review
• Quality control issues
• Not all subfields upload regularly to the arXiv
High-Energy Physics Literature Database.
• Very good search and citation statistics features
• Limited to HEP subjects
Primary journal resource for pedagogical and student-friendly physics articles.
• Papers are highly readable.
• Good for quickly getting background and context in a new topic
• Good for coursework and teaching materials.
• Not best source to find cutting-edge research
The world's most comprehensive collection of full-text dissertations and theses.