Expression of Concern tarnishes copper oxide paper
Articles, like lawn furniture, aren’t supposed to rust after just two months. But the Journal of Materials Chemistry A has issued an Expression of Concern for a February 2014 paper by a group of chemists from India over possible problems with several figures in the article.
The paper, “Hierarchically macro/mesostructured porous copper oxide: Facile synthesis, Characterization, Catalytic performance and Electrochemical study of mesoporous copper oxide monoliths,” was written by Gowhar Ahmad Naikoo, of the department of chemistry at Dr. Hari Singh Gour Central University, in Sagar, and two colleagues. It purported to find that:
Hierarchically macro/meso structured porous copper-oxide monoliths with and without additives (dextran, 1, 3, 5-trimethylbenzene and silica nanoparticles) were successfully synthesized via facile Sol-Gel route and characterized by Scanning electron microscopy (SEM), Powder X-ray diffraction (PXRD), Thermagravimetric analysis (TGA), Brunauer-Emmet-Teller (BET) adsorption technique and FT-IR study. The results obtained reveal that the affect of additives have enhanced specific surface area from 0.558 m2/g to 229.5 m2/g and varied pore size from 8 µm to 39 nm are discussed. Furthermore, the hierarchically porous copper-oxide materials have shown excellent catalytic activity towards the wet oxidation of phenol and electrocatalytic performance of mesoporous copper oxide (mpCuO) against p-nitrophenol, demonstrating the significance of the porous nature of copper-oxide monoliths.
However, according to the statement:
This article has been published in Journal of Materials Chemistry A as a Just Accepted Manuscript and reports the synthesis of hierarchically macro/meso structured porous copper-oxide monoliths, which show catalytic activity towards the wet oxidation of phenol and electrocatalytic performance of mesoporous copper oxide (mpCuO) against p-nitrophenol.
Journal of Materials Chemistry A is publishing this Expression of Concern in order to alert our readers to the fact that we have received significant concerns from members of the community regarding the data presented in this article shown in Figure 1, Figure 2, Figure 5 and Figure 6. Significant concerns have been raised over the possible fabrication of the data presented in these figures.
In response to our inquiries, the institution of the corresponding author has been requested to carry out an investigation. This Expression of Concern will continue to be associated with the article until the investigation into this matter has been concluded.
The letter was signed by Liz Dunn, executive editor of the journal.
Here are tThe images in question are only available behind a paywall. We’re not sure where the “significant concerns” were raised.
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