High-Temperature Superconductors (HTS) considerably accelerate the development of superconducting machines for electrical engineering applications such as fully electrical aircraft. This present contribution is an overview of different superconducting materials that can be used as magnetic screens for the inductor of high specific power electrical machines. The impact of the material properties, such as the critical temperature (Tc) and the critical current density (Jc), on the machine performances is evaluated. In addition, the relevance to flux modulation machines of different HTS bulk synthesis methods are addressed.
The FeSe compound is the simplest high-temperature superconductor (HTSc) possible, and relatively cheap, not containing any rare-earth material. Although the transition temperature, Tc, is just below 10 K, the upper critical fields are comparable with other HTSc. Preparing FeSe using solid-state sintering yields samples exhibiting strong ferromagnetic hysteresis loops (MHLs), and the superconducting contribution is only visible after subtracting MHLs from above Tc. Due to the complicated phase diagram, the samples are a mixture of several phases, the superconducting β-FeSe, and the non-superconducting δ-FeSe and γ-FeSe. Furthermore, antiferromagnetic Fe7Se8 and ferromagnetic α-Fe may be contained, depending directly on the Se loss during the sintering process. Here, we show MHLs measured up to ±7 T and determine the magnetic characteristics, together with the amount of superconductivity determined from M(T) measurements. We also performed a thorough analysis of the microstructures in order to establish a relation between microstructure and the resulting sample properties.
The current flow and the flux pinning properties on struts of superconducting YBa2Cu3Ox (YBCO) foams are analyzed in detail in the temperature range 60 K ≤ T ≤ Tc. For this purpose, magnetization loops were measured on foam struts taken from various positions of a 5 × 2 × 2 cm 3 large foam sample prepared at RWTH Aachen. From these data, the critical current densities, jc, and the flux pinning forces, Fp = jc × B, were calculated and pinning force scaling diagrams Fp/Fp,max vs. h = Ha/Hirr were established. The scaling in the temperature range 60 K < T < 90 K was found to be well developed for all samples with peak positions, h0, above 0.4, which is an indication of δTc-pinning. The shape of the pinning functions is found to be completely different from all other high-Tc materials and varies only slightly with position. This specific dome-shape cannot be described by an addition of several pinning functions, and the parameters p and q do not fit to the description of Dew-Hughes. Therefore, we employ Kramer plots to obtain more information on the flux pinning mechanism. Index Terms-Foam, YBCO, critical currents, flux pinning, scaling. I. INTRODUCTION S UPERCONDUCTING foams are an interesting class of high-T c materials for various applications due to several advantages as compared to conventional bulk samples -. These advantages include facile oxygenation and effective cooling processes, scalability, light weight of the samples, easy shaping and reduced material costs , . The superconducting foams may be useful for a variety of applications, starting from fault-current limiters to trapped field magnets and elements in electric motors and generators, where the reduced weight may play an important role. However, the high-T c superconducting foam samples prepared up to now pose many new questions concerning the current flow in such a 3D material and the corresponding flux pinning properties, which are essential to be answered for future applications of these materials. One important issue is the detailed understanding of Manuscript received xx.xx.xxxx. This work is a part of the SUPERFOAM international project funded by ANR and DFG under the references ANR-17-CE05-0030 and DFG-ANR Ko2323-10.
Various MgB2 thin films and single crystals were found in the literature to exhibit a sharp, narrow peak at low fields in the volume pinning force, Fp(H)-diagrams. The origin of this peak is associated with a steep drop of the current density when applying external magnetic fields and is ascribed to sample purity. We show here that bulk MgB2 prepared by spark-plasma sintering also shows the sharp, narrow peak in Fp. The peak is also seen in the volume pinning force scaling, Fp/Fp,max vs h = H/Hirr. Furthermore, polycrystalline bulk MgB2 samples prepared close to the optimum reaction temperature reveal this peak effect as well, but other samples of the series show a regular scaling behavior. The combination of magnetization data with data from electric transport measurements on the same samples demonstrates the origin of this peak effect. On increasing preparation temperature, the pinning force scaling changes from grain boundary pinning to point pinning and the grain connectivity gets worse. Hence, the sharp, low-field peak in Fp vanishes. Therefore, the occurrence of the peak effect in Fp gives important information on the grain coupling in the MgB2 samples.
Flux-Pinning Docking Interfaces (FPDI) in satellite systems were developed using bulk superconductors and permanent magnets in previous works. However, such FPDIs have limited magnetic field strength, consist of heavy-weight material, and can only be used with a single purpose, i.e., as chasing or docking satellite. Replacing the magnetic material in the FPDI by a trapped field (TF)-magnet would enable the interface to operate for both purposes, i.e., generating a (stronger) magnetic field and trapping it. We show the requirements for such a system and discuss the possible gains when using a TF-FPDI in satellites. To reduce the system weight, the use of superconducting foams as superconducting material is discussed in detail. Furthermore, the use of superconducting foams, the size of which can be easily upscaled, may also comprise the function of the damping material, so even more weight could be saved for the payload.
et al.. Comparison of the temperature and field dependencies of the critical current densities of bulk YBCO, MgB2 and iron-based superconductors. IEEE Transactions on Applied Superconductivity,Abstract-We compare the temperature and field dependence of the critical current densities of high-Tc superconductor materials intended for various bulk applications like trapped-field magnets. This comprises bulk samples of YBa2Cu3Ox (YBCO), MgB2 and iron-based materials, including also various versions of the YBCO compound like melt-textured ones, infiltration-growth processed ones, and YBCO foams. Critical current densities and flux pinning forces were obtained from magnetization loops measured using Quantum Design SQUID and PPMS systems with applied magnetic fields of up to ±9 T. The obtained data are compared to each other with respect of the optimal cooling temperature possible using modern cryocoolers. Furthermore, we plot the temperature dependencies of the critical current densities versus the normalized temperature t = T /Tc. This enables a direct judgement of the performance of the material in the trapped field applications.
Superconducting YBa2Cu3Oy (YBCO) foams were prepared using commercial open-cell, polyurethane foams as starting material to form ceramic Y2BaCuO5 foams which are then converted into superconducting YBCO by using the infiltration growth process. For modelling the superconducting and mechanical properties of the foam samples, a Kelvin-type cell may be employed as a first approach as reported in the literature for pure polyurethane foams. The results of a first modelling attempt in this direction are presented concerning an estimation of the possible trapped fields (TFs) and are compared to experimental results at 77 K. This simple modelling revealed already useful information concerning the best suited foam structure to realize large TF values, but it also became obvious that for various other parameters like magnetostriction, mechanical strength, percolative current flow and the details of the TF distribution, a refined model of a superconducting foam sample incorporating the real sample structure must be considered. Thus, a proper description of the specific microstructure of the superconducting YBCO foams is required. To obtain a set of reliable data, YBCO foam samples were investigated using optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD). A variety of parameters including the size and shape of the cells and windows, the length and shape of the foam struts or ligaments and the respective intersection angles were determined to better describe the real foam structure. The investigation of the foam microstructures revealed not only the differences to the original polymer foams used as base material, but also provided further insights to the infiltration growth process via the large amount of internal surface in a foam sample.
Superconducting YBa2Cu3Oy (YBCO) foams were prepared using commercial open-cell, polyurethane foams as starting material to form ceramic Y2BaCuO5 (Y-211) foams which are then converted into superconducting YBCO by using the infiltration growth process. For modelling the superconducting and mechanical properties of the foam samples, a Kelvin-type cell may be employed as a first approach like done in the literature for pure polyurethane foams. However, for a refined model of a superconducting foam sample, the real sample structure must be considered. Thus, a proper description of the specific microstructure of the superconducting YBCO foams is required. A variety of parameters including the cell size and shape, the window size and shape, the length and shape of the foam struts or ligaments and the respective angles of intersection are used to describe the real foam structure. To obtain a set of reliable data, YBCO foam samples were investigated using optical microscopy, SEM and electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD). The detailed investigation of the foam microstructure reveals not only the differences to the polymeric foams used as base material, but also gives insight to details of the infiltration growth process via the increased surface amount in a foam sample.
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