The COSMO-RS method is an advanced method for the quantitative calculation of solvation mixture thermodynamics based on quantum chemistry. It was developed by Andreas Klamt and is distributed as the software COSMOtherm by his company COSMOlogic (as well as in the form of several remakes by others).
Some Nigerian researchers have used the software (without a license) and report a tremendously and completely unbelievably good correlation (r²=0.992) between the predicted results and experimental data for the logKow (octanol water partition coefficient) of ionic liquids.
A closer look to the data reveals that the experimental data in the plot have nothing to do with the data reported in the PhD thesis referenced as the experimental data source. Hence we need to conclude that the entire paper is complete fake.
The unrealistic results are published in the Journal of Environmental Chemistry and Ecotoxicology, a journal published in Faisalabad, Pakistan by AcademicJournals, one of the very first publishers included on my list of predatory publishers back in 2010.
I received an email from Prof. Dr. Andreas Klamt in Leverkusen, Germany who explained the case to me. He’s the CEO of COSMOlogic. Dr. Klamt writes:
I had been told there about a case, where some Nigerian people reported unbelievably good results with my COSMO-RS method. They report an r² of 0.992, completely out of the realistic expectations. Checking in more detail I found that the experimental data have nothing to do with the experimental data reported in the PhD thesis which is given as source of the experimental data. Not even the number of experimental data is in agreement with the source, nor the sign of the logarithm. The data are complete fake.
A second published article written by the same authors and appearing in the same issue of the same journal is “Improvement of carbon dioxide absorption technology using conductor-like screening model for real solvents (COSMO-RS) method.”
For both articles, all the authors show their affiliation as the Department of Chemical Engineering, Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, Nigeria. The two articles have two authors in common: S.I. Mustapha and S.M. (Saidu Mohammad) Waziri. Mustapha’s name does not appear on the department’s faculty list.
It’s not uncommon to see more than one paper by the same author or authors in the same issue of a predatory journal. Predatory journals sometimes grant volume discounts to authors.
Dr. Klamt has tried in vain to contact the authors, the journal’s editors, and the publisher, with one exception. He reports that one editorial board member responded saying he has been trying to get his name removed from the journal’s website for a long time, but without success.
Predatory publishers accept papers regardless of their scientific rigor just to earn the article processing charges. Junk science like these articles is polluting and corrupting the scholarly record.