Supercurrent facility

Accurately determine the critical surface of highly anisotropic superconductors.

The Robinson Research Institute, in conjunction with HTS-110 Ltd, has designed and built the only commercially-available system specifically designed for the real-world transport characterisation of superconducting wires under the actual conditions of relevance to specific applications. It accurately determines in detail the critical surface of highly anisotropic superconductors.

Our system’s fully cryogen-free construction makes it easy to operate by industrial technicians as well as research scientists and has attracted interest from a large number of leading high temperature superconducting (HTS) wire manufacturers preparing to take the next step towards fully specifying their product, a prerequisite for widespread uptake.

Wire characterisation is essential also to designers of large and small scale superconducting devices based on 2G (YBCO) wire in particular, enabling an efficient but robust device design taking full account of the anisotropy of the wire and the actual operating conditions.

The system incorporates a number of patent-pending innovations in cryogenic cooling system design and measurement methodology that enable the fully automated acquisition and analysis of around 4,000 IV curve measurements per day, the sort of data density required to fully characterise complex anisotropic superconductors. A scientific paper describing the system in detail is available.

Wire characterisation services

The Robinson Research Institute provides wire characterisation services for low-volume and one-off users, on a commercial or collaborative basis.

We aim to establish a comprehensive database of qualified performance data of commercially available HTS wires, and welcome submissions of production material from established suppliers. Example data acquired using the system will be available there.

Our system currently allows for temperatures down to 20 K, fields up to 8 T and 360° rotation of the sample in the field. Full wire samples up to 12 mm wide with a length of 4 cm can be accommodated. Transport currents up to 850 A can be applied to the sample, although this is presently limited only by the power supply and currents beyond 1 kA are anticipated to be achievable if required.