Despite a university’s attempts to avoid discussing a misconduct investigation involving one of its former (and prominent) researchers, we keep reading more about it.
In the third retraction this year for physicist Dmitri Lapotko, the journal mentions a misconduct investigation at Rice University, which concluded the data had been falsified. Trouble is, whenever we’ve tried to talk to Rice about that investigation, they won’t even confirm it took place.
Here’s the retraction notice for “Transient Photothermal Spectra of Plasmonic Nanobubbles,” published by Langmuir:
Continue reading As third retraction for prominent physicist appears, university still won’t acknowledge investigation
A pair of chemical engineers has retracted a paper after another researcher was unable to replicate their work, in a case that we consider an example of doing the right thing.
Dennis Prieve, at Carnegie Mellon University, was interested in applying the paper — on how systems of molecules known as “reverse micelles” conduct electrical charge — to his own work, but was having trouble repeating the calculations. So Prieve contacted the authors — John Berg and his PhD student Edward Michor, based at the University of Washington — who supplied him with their original data.
It took several weeks of back and forth to figure out the problem, Michor told us, as the paper was published in 2012, so he had to decipher his old notes. When they found that several incorrect values were used in the paper, the authors issued a retraction notice, published in March:
Continue reading Doing the right thing: Authors share data, retract when colleague finds error
Sometimes publishers and authors decide it’s easier to retract a paper than leave it up for discussion by other scientists.
That seems to be the case here: The authors of a paper in Langmuir retracted it in September for a math mistake, but not before the journal refused to publish a comment criticizing the publication.
Here’s the notice for “Drainage of a thin liquid film between hydrophobic spheres: Boundary curvature effects:” Continue reading Is it better to retract a paper, or publish a letter calling the conclusions “unphysical?”
Surface chemistry journal Langmuir has retracted an article on a new MRI contrast agent — but only one of the authors agreed.
According to the notice:
Continue reading Faked figure sinks paper on potential new MRI contrast agent