Ivan Bozovic, Brookhaven Lab
U.S. researchers have developed ultrathin films that when sandwiched together form a superconductor, an advance that could lead to a new class of fast, power-saving electronics. The films can be used at relatively high temperatures for superconductors, making them easier to handle and produce.
“What we have done is we have put together two materials, neither of which is a superconductor, and we found their interface — where they touch — is superconducting,” said physicist Ivan Bozovic. “This superconducting layer is extremely thin. It is thinner than 1 nanometer, which is 1 billionth of a meter.”
The superconductors used in a magnetic resonance imaging or MRI machine, for example, must be cooled with liquid helium to keep them at 4 on the Kelvin scale, or near absolute zero minus 452.47 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 269.15 degrees Celsius).
The superconducting film developed by scientists at Brookhaven, however, work at temperatures of 50 Kelvin or minus 369.67 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 223.15 degrees Celsius)…
At 50 Kelvin, the superconducting film is close to the point where it could be cooled inexpensively by liquid nitrogen, which cools to 77 Kelvin or minus 321.07 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 196.15 degrees Celsius).
Amazing work. People have to comprehend that it’s work at the level of basic research that makes developments like this possible.