The Royal Society of Chemistry's flagship journal, Chemical Science, is going Gold open access from 2015 - making it the world's first high-quality open access chemistry journal.
Outgoing UK Science Minister, David Willetts, applauded the move as a "bold step."
With an Impact Factor of 8.3, Chemical Science attracts the best chemistry research from around the world.
From January 2015 onwards, all new content in Chemical Science will be free for anyone to access. And to ease the transition to open access, the Royal Society of Chemistry is waiving all Article Processing Charges (APCs) for two years.
Speaking at a central London event attended by Royal Society of Chemistry members, UK government and parliamentary representatives and members of the wider scientific community, the Royal Society of Chemistry's President, Professor Dominic Tildesley, said: "I am delighted that my first public announcement since assuming the Presidency of the Royal Society of Chemistry just last week is a momentous step forward in sharing chemical science knowledge world-wide.
"The Royal Society of Chemistry fully supports sustainable open access publishing as indeed do I. As the world's leading chemistry community and a not-for-profit organisation, our mission is to serve the best interests of chemistry and society, as we have done for over 170 years. There can be no better way to fulfil that mission than by taking our leading journal to Gold open access - bringing more world leading research to a wider audience than ever before"
Outgoing UK Science Minister, David Willetts, said: "Chemical Science is the world's window on the latest high impact and quality research. I applaud this bold step of the RSC's in opening up the content of their flagship journal. It shows how the UK is leading the world not only in chemistry research but in applying open access principles. Giving the widest access to public funded research is of great benefit to society and acts as a driver for economic growth."