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Optimisation of stacked, bulk high temperature superconductors for trapped-field magnet applications

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Dennis, AR 
Cardwell, DA 


jats:titleAbstract</jats:title> jats:pIt is necessary to fabricate (RE)BCO bulk high temperature superconductors in the form of individual single grains in order to maximise the length scale over which current flows, and hence the trapped magnetic field. However, inherent difficulties in the grain growth process place limitations on the diameter and height of the single grain that may be achieved by existing melt processes. A practical approach to increase the height of the sample and the trapped field at its surface is by assembling individual single grains in a stack formation with their jats:italicab</jats:italic> planes aligned parallel, primarily to avoid the expensive process of fabricating large, individual monoliths. The trapped fields observed at the top and bottom surfaces of a single grain sample are frequently different since both the superconducting and physical properties of single grain (RE)BCO samples are generally non-uniform. This leads to challenges in determining how to spatially arrange stacks of single grain samples to generate the largest and most uniform trapped field overall. In this study, we report the optimisation of two-stack configurations involving a total of 8 individual GdBCO/Ag single grains. The samples were arranged in four pairs and configured with different surfaces in contact in the assembly of the stack. The primary superconducting properties for trapped field and total flux distributions were measured at 77 K and compared for each stack arrangement. The initial results indicate that surfaces with inferior flux trapping properties (measured in terms of the overall trapped field value) of a two-sample stack should be positioned at the middle of the assembly to achieve the best overall trapped field and higher total flux at the external, and therefore, usable surface of the stack sample. A numerical modelling method that incorporates different jats:italicJjats:subc</jats:sub>-B</jats:italic> characteristics for the top and bottom layers of a single grain to take account of the variability in physical properties and spatial non-uniformity confirmed the optimised experimental arrangement of the stacked bulk samples. Furthermore, the optimisation of single grains of ring geometry to achieve a longer and wider uniform magnetic field zone inside the bore was also performed.</jats:p>


Funder: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council; doi:


bulk high temperature superconductors, (RE)BCO, trapped field magnets, stacking, non-uniform single grains, numerical modelling, critical current density

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Superconductor Science and Technology

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IOP Publishing
EPSRC (EP/T014679/1)
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EP/P00962X/1)