ISBN : 9780192858351
Superconductors capture the imagination with seemingly magical properties that allow them to carry electricity without losing any energy at all. They are however, extraordinarily difficult materials to work with. In this book, Susannah Speller explores the astonishing variety of superconducting materials and the rich science behind optimising their performance for use in different applications. Readers will discover how diverse superconducting materials and their applications are, from the metallic alloys used in the Large Hadron Collider to the thin film superconductors that will be crucial for quantum computers. This book tells about how even the simplest superconductors have to be carefully designed and engineered on the nanometre scale. Along the way, the reader will be introduced to what materials science is all about and why advanced materials have such widespread importance for technological progress. With 'Wider View' and 'Under the Lens' sections, Speller provides an accessible and illuminating exploration of superconductors and their place in the modern world.
1 Meet the Family
2 Miraculous Magnets
3 Energy Essentials and Superconducting States
4 Levitation Magic
5 NbTi: The Wonderful Workhorse
6 Quirky Quantum Effects
7 Grain Boundaries: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
8 Battles with Brittleness
9 High Temperature Heroics
10 A Super Future?
Appendix A: Further Reading
Appendix B: Field Decay and Joint Resistance
Appendix C: Derivation of Condensation Energy
List of Symbols and Abbreviations