Digital Ad Specifications:

Display Advertising
Standard: GIF, JPEG
Rich Media: HTML, Flash, JavaScript (for all ads with flash file wmode must be set as transparent)
Certified Vendors: 24/7 RealMedia, Adrime , Adtech ,Adventive, Atlas DMT, Bluestreak, DoubleClick, EyeBlaster, EyeWonder, Mediamind, Mediaplex ,Mixpo , Pointroll, Qoof

*All rich media creatives should be delivered with a gif backup with the same dimensions

Ad Unit Sizes
728x90 (expandable downward to 728x315), 970 X 90 (expendable downward to 970 X 415)
300x250 (expandable left to 600x250), 336x850 (expandable left to 600x850), 600x400 Interstitial, 160x600, 300 X 600, 300 X 1050

Mobile Ads
300 X 250 (mobile interstitial), 300 X 50 (available in the top section of the mobile screen and bottom section of the mobile screen)

Ad File Size
50K maximum file size

3X looping maximum, 15 seconds of animation maximum

User initiated audio, except for streaming video ads, which can start playing with audio immediately

User Interaction

  • Any floating overlay or expandable portion of the ad must contain a clearly visible 20x30 [x] CLOSE or SKIP button that allows the user to stop the animation and close the floating, overlay or expanding element immediately.
  • "Same in-Same out" Expansion on mouse-over requires collapse on mouse-off. Expansion on click requires click to collapse.
  • Expandable ad panels can at no time cover, impede or otherwise obscure site logo, or other in-page ad spaces (same advertiser exceptions permitted)


  • All Standard/Rich Media ad products listed above support:
    - 3rd Party 1x1 impression tracking (Not including Newsletter Ad Placements)
    - 3rd Party click tracking via click command URLs

Email Newsletters
HTML: 300x250 25K maximum file size, GIF or JPG only
Text: 4 lines of copy with 70 characters per line, plus the 5th line is the link.
This link will appear coded, not readable, so we can track clicks.

RSS Feed Ads
300x250, 468x60 GIF or JPEG

Video Ads
Pre-Roll: 0:30 second max
Video: 540x340 or 285x246; Same as source fps, Progressive
Audio: MPEG Layer III (MP3), 128 kbps, Stereo
Bitrate: VBR, 2 Pass, Target 1000.00 kbps

60 Second Science series: 10 second maximum audio credit, mp3 file, 256 kbps
Weekly Science Talk: 30 second maximum audio credit, mp3 file, 256 kbps

Creative Deadlines
5 business days for Rich Media and Video ads; 2 weeks for podcast audio credits

IAB AAAA Version 2.0
- At any time prior to the serving of the first impression, agency can cancel the IO with 30 days written notice without penalty.
- Upon the serving of the first impression of the IO, agency can cancel IO for any reason, without penalty, by providing Scientific American written notice of cancellation 14 days in advance.