Nature Retracts Room-Temperature Superconductor Discovery newsfragment


Nature, some of the prestigious journals in medical publishing, on Tuesday retracted a high-profile paper it had revealed in March that claimed the invention of a superconductor that labored at on a regular basis temperatures.

It used to be the second one superconductor paper involving Ranga P. Dias, a lecturer of mechanical engineering and physics on the College of Rochester in Brandnew York Atmosphere, to be retracted via the magazine in simply over a life. It joined an unrelated paper retracted via some other magazine wherein Dr. Dias used to be a key creator.

Dr. Dias and his colleagues’ analysis is the original in a protracted record of claims of room-temperature superconductors that experience didn’t pan out. However the retraction raised uncomfortable questions for Nature about why the magazine’s editors publicized the analysis upcoming that they had already scrutinized and retracted an previous paper from the similar workforce.

A spokesman for Dr. Dias mentioned that the scientist denied allegations of analysis misconduct. “Professor Dias intends to resubmit the scientific paper to a journal with a more independent editorial process,” the consultant mentioned.

First came upon in 1911, superconductors can appear virtually magical — they behavior electrical energy with out resistance. On the other hand, deny recognized fabrics are superconductors in on a regular basis situations. Maximum require ultracold temperatures, and up to date advances towards superconductors that serve as at upper temperatures require crushing pressures.

A superconductor that works at on a regular basis temperatures and pressures may in finding virtue in M.R.I. scanners, album digital units and levitating trains.

Superconductors rapidly turned into a viral matter on social networks over the summer time when a distinct workforce of scientists, in South Korea, additionally claimed to have came upon a room-temperature superconductor, named LK-99. Inside of a few weeks, the thrill died away upcoming alternative scientists have been not able to verify the superconductivity observations and got here up with believable supplementary explanations.

Although it used to be revealed in a high-profile magazine, Dr. Dias’s declare of a room-temperature superconductor didn’t activate euphoria like LK-99 did as a result of many scientists within the ground already appeared his paintings with hesitation.

In the Nature paper revealed in March, Dr. Dias and his colleagues reported that that they had came upon a subject matter — lutetium hydride with some nitrogen added — that used to be ready to superconduct electrical energy at temperatures of as much as 70 levels Fahrenheit. It nonetheless required force of 145,000 kilos according to sq. inch, which isn’t tricky to use in a laboratory. The fabric took on a pink hue when squeezed, eminent Dr. Dias to nickname it “reddmatter” upcoming a substance in a “Star Trek” film.

Lower than 3 years previous, Nature revealed a paper from Dr. Dias and most of the identical scientists. It described a distinct subject matter that they mentioned used to be additionally a superconductor even supposing handiest at crushing pressures of just about 40 million kilos according to sq. inch. However alternative researchers puzzled one of the crucial information within the paper. Later an investigation, Nature assuredly, retracting the paper in September 2022 over the objections of the authors.

In August of this life, the magazine Bodily Evaluate Letters retracted a 2021 paper via Dr. Dias that described shrewd electric houses, even supposing no longer superconductivity, in some other chemical compound, manganese sulfide.

James Hamlin, a lecturer of physics on the College of Florida, advised Bodily Evaluate Letters’ editors that the curves in one of the crucial paper’s figures describing electric resistance in manganese sulfide appeared matching to graphs in Dr. Dias’s doctoral thesis that described the conduct of a distinct subject matter.

Outdoor professionals enlisted via the magazine assuredly that the information appeared suspiciously matching, and the paper used to be retracted. In contrast to the sooner Nature retraction, all 9 of Dr. Dias’s co-authors assuredly to the retraction. Dr. Dias used to be the lone holdout and maintained that the paper appropriately portrayed the analysis findings.

In Would possibly, Dr. Hamlin and Brad J. Ramshaw, a lecturer of physics at Cornell College, despatched editors at Nature their considerations in regards to the lutetium hydride information within the March paper.

Later the retraction via Bodily Evaluate Letters, lots of the authors of the lutetium hydride paper concluded that the analysis from their paper used to be incorrect too.

In a letter dated Sept. 8, 8 of the 11 authors requested for the Nature paper to be retracted.

“Dr. Dias has not acted in good faith in regard to the preparation and submission of the manuscript,” they advised the Nature editors.

The writers of the letter integrated 5 fresh graduate scholars who labored in Dr. Dias’s lab, in addition to Ashkan Salamat, a lecturer of physics on the College of Nevada, Las Vegas, who collaborated with Dr. Dias at the two previous retracted papers. Dr. Dias and Dr. Salamat based Unearthly Fabrics, an organization that used to be supposed to show the superconducting discoveries into business merchandise.

Dr. Salamat, who used to be the corporate’s president and eminent govt, is now not an worker there. He didn’t reply to a request for remark at the retraction.

Within the retraction understand revealed on Tuesday, Nature mentioned that the 8 authors who wrote the letter in September expressed the view that “the published paper does not accurately reflect the provenance of the investigated materials, the experimental measurements undertaken and the data-processing protocols applied.”

The problems, the ones authors mentioned, “undermine the integrity of the published paper.”

Dr. Dias and two alternative authors, former scholars of his, “have not stated whether they agree or disagree with this retraction,” the attention mentioned. A Nature spokeswoman mentioned they didn’t reply to the proposed retraction.

“This has been a deeply frustrating situation,” Karl Ziemelis, the eminent scribbler for carried out and bodily sciences at Nature, mentioned in a remark.

Mr. Ziemelis defended the magazine’s dealing with of the paper. “Indeed, as is so often the case, the highly qualified expert reviewers we selected raised a number of questions about the original submission, which were largely resolved in later revisions,” he mentioned. “This is how peer review works.”

He added, “What the peer-review process cannot detect is whether the paper as written accurately reflects the research as it was undertaken.”

For Dr. Ramshaw, the retraction supplied validation. “When you are looking into someone else’s work, you always wonder whether you are just seeing things or overinterpreting,” he mentioned.

The disappointments of LK-99 and Dr. Dias’s claims won’t deter alternative scientists from investigating imaginable superconductors. 20 years in the past, a scientist at Bell Labs, J. Hendrik Schön, revealed a sequence of placing findings, together with album superconductors. Investigations confirmed that he had made up maximum of his information.

That didn’t stymie then primary superconductor discoveries. In 2014, a gaggle led via Mikhail Eremets, of the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Germany, confirmed that hydrogen-containing compounds are superconductors at strangely heat temperatures when squeezed below ultrahigh pressures. The ones findings are nonetheless extensively permitted.

Russell J. Hemley, a lecturer of physics and chemistry on the College of Illinois Chicago who adopted up Dr. Eremets’s paintings with experiments that discovered some other subject matter that used to be additionally a superconductor at ultrahigh force situations, continues to consider Dr. Dias’s lutetium hydride findings. In June, Dr. Hemley and his collaborators reported that that they had additionally leisurely the plain vanishing {of electrical} resistance in a pattern that Dr. Dias had supplied, and on Tuesday, Dr. Hemley mentioned he remained assured that the findings could be reproduced via alternative scientists.

Later the Bodily Evaluate Letters retraction, the College of Rochester showed that it had began a “comprehensive investigation” via professionals no longer affiliated with the college. A college spokeswoman mentioned that it had deny plans to create the findings of the investigation crowd.

The College of Rochester has got rid of YouTube movies it produced in March that featured college officers lauding Dr. Dias’s analysis as a leap forward.


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