What is Carbon?

3 min readSep 30, 2020

Carbon is the private collaboration side of protocols.io, allowing your team to develop methods, organize work, and collaborate securely from anywhere. It provides advanced features that enable you to collaborate with colleagues, and ensures that the work provided won’t leave, even if a team member does.

Many are familiar with our open access side, which is where public methods are always free to read and publish on protocols.io. However, many protocols.io users also utilize our platform for secure and private collaboration. This secure and private collaboration side of our platform, is now being referred to as Carbon. It is also important to note that Premium Accounts are now referred to as Carbon. This means that if you already had a Premium Workspace, you will now have access to Carbon.

Secure and private collaboration

Carbon aims to improve internal reproducibility. It allows you to share methods, collaborate with colleagues, and manage all of your protocols and files.

The File Manager, which is the central place on protocols.io, allows you to easily export anything that you work on. It can also be utilized as a team administration feature to organize all of your work. While Workspaces provide a place for you to privately collaborate with others. You can invite colleagues to collaborate, have discussions, and share resources. You are able to share a protocol with your entire team or lab, making the protocol accessible to everyone. For academia and industry, if someone leaves your team, this ensures that the organized methods and knowledge will stay in one place.

If you are creating a workspace, you also have the ability to customize the workspace visibility settings to visible or invisible. By choosing to create an invisible workspace, people can only join by invitation only. However, you are able to change your workspace visibility settings at any time.

Our editor functionality enables reproducibility by providing a dynamic and interactive protocol structure. The concurrent editor feature allows you to work on the same document with colleagues, see any changes that were made, and initiate discussions. Both public and private protocols offer versioning so you will be able to see the previous protocols and create new versions at any time.

Carbon For Institutions

An Institutional Plan provides access to protocols.io Carbon features and functionality to everyone at your institute, including researchers, teachers and students. Groups, including research teams, core facilities, or classes at these institutions benefit from unlimited private space for collaborative method development and sharing of SOPs or class materials.

There are many long term benefits to Carbon for Institutions, such as increased rigor and reproducibility, researcher credit, guaranteed stewardship of research outputs, and portable teaching infrastructure for all phases of learning and research. You can learn more about Carbon for Institutional Plans here.

You can also explore Carbon for Academia here.

Carbon for Industry

If you’re an industry professional looking for added features within protocols.io, Carbon provides additional support. Carbon allows you to keep your protocols and scientific knowledge safely in your institution/company, and create different levels of access for any protocol. It provides a single workspace for collaboration with colleagues or customers through protocol optimizations and discussions.

Explore more Carbon resources:

To watch our webinar on Carbon, click here.

To check if your organization already has access to Carbon, click here.




A secure platform for developing and sharing reproducible methods.