January 27, 2014

ORNL study advances quest for better superconducting materials

Nearly 30 years after the discovery of high-temperature superconductivity, many questions remain, but an Oak Ridge National Laboratory team is providing insight that could lead to better superconductors.

Their work, published in Physical Review Letters, examines the role of chemical dopants, which are essential to creating high-temperature superconductors – materials that conduct electricity without resistance. The role of dopants in superconductors is particularly mysterious as they introduce non-uniformity and disorder into the crystal structure, which increases resistivity in non-superconducting materials.