Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers bridge superconductivity gap

01.04.2005


University of California scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory working with a researcher from Chonnam National University in South Korea have found that magnetic fluctuations appear to be responsible for superconductivity in a compound called plutonium-cobalt-pentagallium (PuCoGa5). The discovery of this "unconventional superconductivity" may lead scientists to a whole new class of superconducting materials and toward the goal of eventually synthesizing "room-temperature" superconductors.



In research reported in today’s edition of the scientific journal Nature, Nicholas Curro and a team of researchers provide evidence of how magnetic fluctuations, rather than interactions mediated by tiny vibrations in the underlying crystal structure, may be responsible for the electron pairing that produces superconductivity in the mixture of plutonium, cobalt and gallium.

Superconductivity is an unusual state of matter in which electrical current flows without resistance through a material as a result of the material’s electrons acting in pairs. Since the discovery at Los Alamos of PuCoGa5 roughly two years ago, a burning question has been whether the compound was just another garden-variety superconductor, a so-called s-wave superconductor, or an unconventional one that is mediated by magnetic fluctuations, a d-wave superconductor.


Although the temperatures at which superconductivity is observed are usually quite low, a handful of compounds like PuCoGa5 have been found to possess superconductivity at temperatures warmer than minus 427 degrees Fahrenheit. Even though that temperature seems low, PuCoGa5 possesses highest superconducting transition temperature among actinide based compounds found so far. This "unconventional superconductivity" suggests that PuCoGa5 may be one of a very small handful of superconductors whose superconductivity actually derives from magnetic correlations.

Scientists theorize that having found one unconventional superconductor like PuCoGa5, they may find more in the future. Making the research even more intriguing is the fact that plutonium is a base actinide material of the compound. This new class of magnetically mediated superconductors might encompass a broad range of materials, metals to oxides, and be the path toward superconductor science’s ultimate goal to someday synthesize a "room-temperature" superconductor that would be the basis for the dissipation-less flow of electric current through power lines, and for an even more minute generation of computer chips. The discovery is the result of collaboration between the Laboratory’s Materials Science and Technology and Theoretical divisions. In addition to Curro, the team includes Tod Caldwell, Eric Bauer, Luis Morales, Yunkyu Bang, Matthias Graf, Alexander Balatsky, Joe Thompson and John Sarrao.

Todd Hanson | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.lanl.gov

More articles from Power and Electrical Engineering:

nachricht Linear potentiometer LRW2/3 - Maximum precision with many measuring points
17.05.2017 | WayCon Positionsmesstechnik GmbH

nachricht First flat lens for immersion microscope provides alternative to centuries-old technique
17.05.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

All articles from Power and Electrical Engineering >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

Im Focus: World's thinnest hologram paves path to new 3-D world

Nano-hologram paves way for integration of 3-D holography into everyday electronics

An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

How herpesviruses win the footrace against the immune system

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

Water forms 'spine of hydration' around DNA, group finds

26.05.2017 | Life Sciences

First Juno science results supported by University of Leicester's Jupiter 'forecast'

26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>