IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Microsoft-led scientists retract quantum "breakthrough" research

The team have retracted their findings after problems found with the original data

A team of researchers led by Microsoft have withdrawn a research paper into quantum computing that was published in 2018.

The scientists had published a paper in the journal Nature claiming to have found evidence of a subatomic particle that could help develop quantum computers. The paper focuses on creating qubits, a unit of information having both the values of one or zero, using the properties of Majorana particles. These were named after the Italian physicist Ettore Majorana in the 1930s.

In the paper’s retraction, it notes that there were “several inconsistencies... between the raw measurement data that was made available to them and the figures that were published in the paper.”

The scientists established that the data in two of the figures had been “unnecessarily corrected for charge jumps (corrections that were not mentioned explicitly in the paper)” and also that “one of the figure axes was mislabelled.”

The retraction goes on to say that the data was replotted over the full parameter range and concludes with this statement: “We can therefore no longer claim the observation of a quantized Majorana conductance, and wish to retract this Letter.”

Zulfi Alam, vice president at Microsoft, stated in a post on LinkedIn: “We remain confident in our topological approach to scaled quantum computing, as we nurture a culture of continuous improvement to innovate across every component of the Quantum Machine.”

Quantum computing, once it has been developed fully, will purportedly provide a range of benefits for businesses including improved security, better logistics, better fraud detection and more.

Microsoft isn’t the only major tech company foraging into this emerging technology, IBM hit a quantum computing milestone last August and Amazon’s AWS launched a quantum cloud service too.

Featured Resources

Four strategies for building a hybrid workplace that works

All indications are that the future of work is hybrid, if it's not here already

Free webinar

The digital marketer’s guide to contextual insights and trends

How to use contextual intelligence to uncover new insights and inform strategies

Free Download

Ransomware and Microsoft 365 for business

What you need to know about reducing ransomware risk

Free Download

Building a modern strategy for analytics and machine learning success

Turning into business value

Free Download

Recommended

Microsoft says it's provided over $100 million in tech support to Ukrainian government
cyber attacks

Microsoft says it's provided over $100 million in tech support to Ukrainian government

20 May 2022
Microsoft to double salary budget to retain workers
Careers & training

Microsoft to double salary budget to retain workers

17 May 2022
Microsoft warns of new botnet variant targeting Windows and Linux systems
Security

Microsoft warns of new botnet variant targeting Windows and Linux systems

16 May 2022
Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies
Server & storage

Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies

12 May 2022

Most Popular

Russian hackers declare war on 10 countries after failed Eurovision DDoS attack
hacking

Russian hackers declare war on 10 countries after failed Eurovision DDoS attack

16 May 2022
Researchers demonstrate how to install malware on iPhone after it's switched off
Security

Researchers demonstrate how to install malware on iPhone after it's switched off

18 May 2022
Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies
Server & storage

Windows Server admins say latest Patch Tuesday broke authentication policies

12 May 2022