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Scientific reproducibility requires studies to be performed using well-documented methods. But these best practices are not always clear, for example, in emerging sub-fields where standard procedures are not yet established. One way that Nature journals are encouraging best practices and reproducibility is by publishing Expert Recommendations – articles that propose a course of action, best working practices or methodological guidelines. Traditionally these pieces were published as Comments or Perspectives, but Nature Reviews Physics has formally introduced the Expert Recommendation as an article type. This collection highlights Expert Recommendations on physical science topics.
Random lasing, which exploits disorder to enhance stimulated emission, challenges the conventional descriptions of lasing. This Expert Recommendation describes experimental methods required to properly assess and demonstrate random lasing action.
The performance of photodetectors fabricated from emerging semiconductors such as perovskites, quantum dots, two-dimensional materials or organics, for example, can be prone to misinterpretation. This Comment exposes the problems and proposes some guidelines for accurate characterization.
The solutions adopted by the high-energy physics community to foster reproducible research are examples of best practices that could be embraced more widely. This first experience suggests that reproducibility requires going beyond openness.
Mobility is an important charge-transport parameter in organic, inorganic and hybrid semiconductors. We outline some of the common pitfalls of mobility extraction from field-effect transistor (FET) measurements and propose practical recommendations to avoid reporting erroneous mobilities in publications.
The definition and reporting of spatial resolution for coherent imaging methods varies widely in the imaging community. We advocate the use of a standard spoke-pattern imaging target and the mandatory inclusion of information about underlying a priori assumptions.
Mischaracterization of solar cell power conversion efficiencies and widespread publication of inconsistent data in scientific journals threatens to undermine progress in organic and hybrid photovoltaics research.
The quest for on-chip optical isolators has recently spawned many new isolator structures. However, there has been some confusion about the requirement of nonreciprocity. Here, we review the essential characteristics of an isolator.
A transistor that operates with photons rather than electrons is often heralded as the next step in information processing, but optical technology must first prove itself to be a viable solution in many different respects.