Superconductors and Applications

Topics: Superconductivity, BCS theory, Electron Pages: 6 (2065 words) Published: March 16, 2008
In the next few pages I will be talking about superconductors, I will be trying to inform the reader on every thing I know on superconductors, which is not much but hopefully I could talk the reader into trying to figure out a way to make things more energy efficient, but probably not since the only person reading this will be the professor or a teachers assistant how knows everything that I will be saying. However the reason I wanted to write this paper is because of what Dr. Dahiya said the first or second day of class, which was about superconductors and semiconductors, but it was the thing about superconductors that made me think. Once you have read the paper I hope that the point that I get across is what superconductors are and how they could help the world. INTODUCTION

At the beginning of General Physics II (PH-230-01) at Southeast Missouri State, the class was introduced to the instructor, Dr. Dahiya. After all the basic stuff was said and done he said that he wanted to tell us about superconductors and semiconductors. Since this paper is about superconductors that is what I am going to talk about. Dr. Dahiya really made me think, and after class I have always thought about electricity and other things to lose energy to heat. Dr. Dahiya said that who ever could come up with a superconductor that is cost efficient would be so rich that that person's great-great-grandkids would be taken care of, that is how much superconductors could change the world. Now some people have made superconductors and there are superconductors out there, but none that would be cheap enough to use on power lines, car engines, and other things that make energy. Dr. Dahiya [1] said that out of the 100% of electricity sent to houses and businesses only about 50% of the electricity makes it there. It is lost do to heat because the atoms are not going in a straight line, the heat makes the atoms come in contact with each other and when those atoms collide with each other and they don't make it to there destination. However if we could keep the power lines cold enough then the atoms would stay in the straight line and out not be lost to heat, then the 100% of electricity would make it to the house or building. This is also the same for engines in cars, when the engines are running and producing energy it gives off heat and some of the energy is lost so the cars have to run harder and use more gas, but if the engines would be 100% efficient then they would not use as much gas which would in turn save more money.

The thing that makes it hard to figure out how to make superconductors is because of the temperature that has to be applied to the metals. The temperature has to be very cold to get the resistivity to zero; I remember Dr. Dahiya said that you could get the power lines to be superconductors by running liquid nitrogen across them but liquid nitrogen is very expensive to use. When I was looking for information about superconductors to see if there were any that the temperature did not have to be so cold and I found a website that stated this, "High-temperature superconductivity in the copper oxides, first discovered twenty years ago, has led researchers on a wide-ranging quest to understand and use this new state of matter. From the start, these materials have been viewed as `exotic' superconductors, for which the term exotic can take on many meanings. The breadth of work that has taken place reflects the fact that they have turned out to be exotic in almost every way imaginable. They exhibit new states of matter (d-wave superconductivity, charge stripes), dramatic manifestations of fluctuating superconductivity, plus a key inspiration and testing ground for new experimental and theoretical techniques."[2] This really just seemed to say no there is not and I will be a long time till we even find something that can make metals cold enough to be come superconducting, which bring me to making superconductor cold....
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