Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Template engineering demonstrates possibilities of new superconducting material

Chang-Beom Eom
Chang-Beom Eom

Abstract:
A breakthrough approach by University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers and their collaborators in fabricating thin films of a new superconducting material has yielded promising results: The material has a current-carrying potential 500 times that of previous experiments, making it significant for a variety of practical applications.

By Sandra Knisely

Template engineering demonstrates possibilities of new superconducting material

Madison, WI | Posted on March 1st, 2010

The new approach and results appeared online in the journal Nature Materials on February 28 and illustrate a significant step forward in superconductor research.

"We've shown how to grow quality, single-crystal thin films of this class of materials, so people can study the fundamental properties and limits of them," says Chang-Beom Eom, a professor of Materials Science and Engineering, who led the collaboration between UW-Madison and teams from the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory and the University of Michigan.

Superconductors are powerful materials that conduct electricity with no resistance, meaning no loss of electricity. Among the various possibilities of superconductors, a team in Japan is exploring how to make high-speed, levitating trains with superconductors that theoretically could travel almost as fast as airplanes. More immediately, superconductors are used in MRI machines.

While superconductors have enormous potential, they only work at very low temperatures. The copper-oxide-based superconductors, which have the highest operating temperature, work at approximately minus 180 degrees Fahrenheit.

Another major challenge is how much current superconductors can carry. For example, a levitating train would require a superconductor and magnet larger than currently is practical. However, if a superconductor had high current-carrying abilities, the mass of the superconductor and magnet theoretically could be small enough for real applications.

This second challenge is part of what Eom's team has addressed. Recently, scientists have discovered an alternative to copper-oxide superconductors. Called pnictides, the materials are based on iron and arsenide and are promising because they have relatively high transition temperatures, along with other ideal properties.

Until now, no one has been able to study the intrinsic properties of pnictides because it has been impossible to fabricate a single crystal of it with all of the material grains pointing in the same direction. "The quality of the films is crucial because imperfect films contain many crystal boundaries, which obstruct the current, as work published by our team late last year has shown," says Eom.

Eom and his team hypothesized that the pnictide thin films couldn't grow properly because the substrate used most commonly by researchers is oxide-based. Thin films like to grow in the same way as the material beneath them. Hence, the metallic-based pnictides couldn't thrive on the oxide substrate.

The researchers then engineered a thin template to place on top of the oxide substrate. This template has both metallic and oxide elements, meaning it can interface with both the substrate and the thin film. With the template, the film grows in a more ideal arrangement. The template also acts as a nucleation layer, or barrier, between the conducting thin film and the non-conducting, or insulating, substrate. (The template can't be used as the substrate itself because it becomes conducting when the film grows. As a very thin, intermediate layer, the template allows the film to grow, but has only a negligible effect on electrical measurements.)

Previously, researchers were only able to measure 10,000 amps of electricity per .06 cubic inch, which is a relatively useless amount. With the template, which is made of barium titanate or strontium titanate, Eom's team has demonstrated that pnictide thin films are capable of producing 5 million amps per .06 cubic inch a 500-fold increase that brings pnictide current capacity into the usable range.

The team's three-pronged research including the hypothesis about why previous approaches failed, the new template engineering solution and the significant carrying capacity results will help other researchers learn more about pnictides and expand basic knowledge about superconductivity in general. Beyond superconductors, the template approach can be applied whenever a researcher wants to grow a metallic film on an oxide substrate.

"When any new material is discovered, we want to understand the fundamental mechanisms of it," says Eom. "We now have perfect, single-crystal thin films of pnictides in order to do that."

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Chang-Beom Eom

608-263-6305

Copyright © University of Wisconsin-Madison

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related News Press

News and information

Rutgers, NIST physicists report technology with potential for sub-micron optical switches March 31st, 2015

Prototype 'nanoneedles' generate new blood vessels in mice: Scientists have developed tiny 'nanoneedles' that have successfully prompted parts of the body to generate new blood vessels, in a trial in mice March 31st, 2015

Super sensitive measurement of magnetic fields March 31st, 2015

Nanomedicine pioneer Mauro Ferrari at ETH Zurich March 31st, 2015

Thin films

LAMDAMAP 2015 hosted by the University March 26th, 2015

A new method for making perovskite solar cells March 16th, 2015

Engineers create chameleon-like artificial 'skin' that shifts color on demand March 12th, 2015

Researchers synthesize new thin-film material for use in fuel cells: Article in the journal APL Materials shows how to grow Bi2Pt2O7 pyrochlore, potentially a more effective cathode for future fuel cells March 10th, 2015

Possible Futures

Nanotechnology in Medical Devices Market is expected to reach $8.5 Billion by 2019 March 25th, 2015

Nanotechnology Enabled Drug Delivery to Influence Future Diagnosis and Treatments of Diseases March 21st, 2015

Nanocomposites Market Growth, Industry Outlook To 2020 by Grand View Research, Inc. March 21st, 2015

Nanotechnology Drug Delivery Market in the US 2012-2016 : Latest Report Available by Radiant Insights, Inc March 16th, 2015

Discoveries

Rutgers, NIST physicists report technology with potential for sub-micron optical switches March 31st, 2015

Prototype 'nanoneedles' generate new blood vessels in mice: Scientists have developed tiny 'nanoneedles' that have successfully prompted parts of the body to generate new blood vessels, in a trial in mice March 31st, 2015

Super sensitive measurement of magnetic fields March 31st, 2015

From tobacco to cyberwood March 31st, 2015

Materials/Metamaterials

Wrapping carbon nanotubes in polymers enhances their performance: Scientists at Japan's Kyushu University say polymer-wrapped carbon nanotubes hold much promise in biotechnology and energy applications March 30th, 2015

DFG to Establish One Clinical Research Unit and Five Research Units: New Projects to Investigate Complications in Pregnancy, Particle Physics, Nanoparticles, Implants and Transport Planning / Approximately 13 Million Euros in Funding for an Initial Three-Year Period March 28th, 2015

Chemists make new silicon-based nanomaterials March 27th, 2015

UT Dallas engineers twist nanofibers to create structures tougher than bulletproof vests March 27th, 2015

Announcements

Rutgers, NIST physicists report technology with potential for sub-micron optical switches March 31st, 2015

Prototype 'nanoneedles' generate new blood vessels in mice: Scientists have developed tiny 'nanoneedles' that have successfully prompted parts of the body to generate new blood vessels, in a trial in mice March 31st, 2015

Super sensitive measurement of magnetic fields March 31st, 2015

Nanomedicine pioneer Mauro Ferrari at ETH Zurich March 31st, 2015

Alliances/Partnerships/Distributorships

NXP and GLOBALFOUNDRIES Announce Production of 40nm Embedded Non-Volatile Memory Technology: Co-developed technology to leverage GLOBALFOUNDRIES 40nm process technology platform March 24th, 2015

Young NTU Singapore spin-off clinches S$4.3 million joint venture with Chinese commercial giant March 23rd, 2015

Halas, Nordlander awarded Optical Society's R.W. Wood Prize: Rice University researchers recognized for pioneering nanophotonics March 21st, 2015

EU Funded PCATDES Project has completed its half-period with success March 19th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE