Superconductivity is the transmission of current with no resistive losses, and is one of the most active areas of condensed matter physics research.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

23
votes
3answers
962 views

Why is high temperature superconductivity so hard to solve?

The phenomenon of high temperature superconductivity has been known for decades, particularly layered cuprate superconductors. We know the precise lattice structure of the materials. We know the band ...
19
votes
4answers
723 views

What observables are indicative of BCS Cooper pair condensation?

What observables are indicative of BCS Cooper pair condensation? "Thought" experiments and "numerical" experiments are allowed. This question is motivated by the question Has BCS Cooper pair ...
12
votes
5answers
4k views

How can Ohm's law be correct if superconductors have 0 resistivity

Ohm's law states that the relationship between current ( I ) voltage ( V ) and resistance ( R ) is $$I = \frac{V}{R}$$ However superconductors cause the resistance of a material to go to zero, and ...
12
votes
4answers
1k views

Usage of helium in MRIs

More and more articles pop up on the shortage of helium, and on the importance of it. Its usage in MRI's spring to mind for example. I looked it up and found out that helium is used for its 'low ...
12
votes
3answers
890 views

Shine a light into a superconductor

A type-I superconductor can expel almost all magnetic flux (below some critical value $H_c$) from its interior when superconducting. Light as we know is an electromagnetic wave. So what would happen ...
11
votes
3answers
3k views

Can a superconducting wire conduct unlimited current?

A superconducting wire has no electrical resistance and as such it does not heat up when current passes through it. Non-superconducting wires can be damaged by too much current, because they get too ...
10
votes
3answers
403 views

What does the term liquid mean in condensed matter physics?

In condensed matter physics, people always say quantum liquid or spin liquid. What does liquid mean?
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Has Chandra Varma explained cuprate superconductivity?

Chandra Varma is a theoretical physicist at University of California, Riverside. A couple years ago, he gave a talk at my institution purporting to explain superconductivity in the cuprates. It all ...
10
votes
2answers
468 views

Do topological superconductors exhibit symmetry-enriched topological order?

Gapped Hamiltonians with a ground-state having long-range entanglement (LRE), are said to have topological order (TO), while if the ground state is short-range entangled (SRE) they are in the trivial ...
9
votes
2answers
282 views

Superconductivity reasons (Intutitive)

Superconductivity I read in a book "Physics - Resnik and Halliday" the explanation of Type-I Superconductors{cold ones} that: The Electrons that make up current at super-cool temperatures move in ...
8
votes
3answers
625 views

Is a superconductor really a super conductor?

It is known that a superconductor is a material with electrical resistance zero. My question is, it is exactly zero, a theoretical zero, or for practical realistic reasons it is effectively zero?
8
votes
3answers
688 views

How come a photon acts like it has mass in a superconducting field?

I've heard the Higgs mechanism explained as analogous to the reason that a photon acts like it has mass in a superconducting field. However, that's not too helpful if I don't understand the latter. ...
8
votes
1answer
653 views

Experimental signature of topological superconductor

I was wondering if someone can provides some clear experimental signatures of a topological superconductors ? I was thinking about that, because for topological insulator, one of the hallmarks is ...
8
votes
2answers
5k views

How does quantum trapping with diamagnets work?

I just saw this demonstration by someone from a Tel Aviv University lab. What they achieved there is mind blowing. I myself own a levitron that uses the Hall effect to levitate a magnet, the problem ...
8
votes
1answer
226 views

BCS wave function in Neutron stars

I've heard mentioned in various classes that neutron stars, like superconductors, are described by BCS theory. I know that in superconductors a key element in forming cooper pairs is a net attractive ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Measuring the spin of a single electron

Is it possible to measure the spin of a single electron? What papers have been published on answering this question? Would the measurement require a super sensitive SQUID, Superconductive Quantum ...
8
votes
2answers
465 views

What does “particle number conservation” mean in condensed matter physics?

What exactly does it imply about a condensed matter system to have particle number conserved or not conserved? For example, why does the superconducting phase break particle number conservation while ...
8
votes
1answer
366 views

Nambu-Goldstone bosons from a quantum anomaly symmetry breaking?

We know that: Nambu-Goldstone bosons come from Goldstone theorem: a spontaneous (continuous)-symmetry breaking of the system leads to massless scalar modes. quantum anomaly: is the anomalous ...
8
votes
1answer
223 views

Why aren't superconductors shiny? [duplicate]

Superconductors are really good at conducting electricity. Should they not reflect light very well too?
8
votes
0answers
86 views

Monopoles and the magnetic Higgs mechanism

In a paper of 't Hooft about the rôle of magnetic monopoles for a model of quark confinement, I don't understand the following sentence (end af paragraph 14) [...] in order for monopoles to ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Can superconducting magnets fly (or repel the earth's core)?

If a superconducting magnet and appropriate power supply had just enough $I\cdot s$ (current $\cdot$ length) so that when it was perpendicular to the earth's magnetic field, the force of the ...
8
votes
0answers
712 views

Why is the AdS/CFT approach to superconductors rarely cited in condensed matter publications?

Let me put things into perspective by comparing with other applications of string theory. Nowadays review papers written by cosmologists about inflation models often discuss string theory scenarios ...
7
votes
3answers
388 views

What is the RC time constant in a superconductor?

In conventional conductors, the RC time constant is the time required to charge or discharge a capacitor through a resistor by ≈ 63.2 percent of the difference between the initial value and final ...
7
votes
2answers
512 views

How far away are we from resolving high temperature superconductivity?

What are the major recent findings and their corresponding contributions to an overall picture? How well explained are the various regions of the dome, is there any thing that is pretty well ...
7
votes
2answers
662 views

How is stable levitation possible?

This question is with reference to the video in this blog post: http://www.universetoday.com/90183/quantum-levitation-and-the-superconductor/ My question is the following: how is the disc stable in ...
7
votes
1answer
528 views

A better conceptual model for cooper pairs in a superconductor

The conceptual model I have been introduced to for cooper pairs in a bulk superconductor is what I would call the "wake" model, where one electron deforms the positively charged lattice, changing the ...
7
votes
3answers
545 views

Superconducting Wavefunction Phase (Feynman Lectures)

In Volume 3, Section 21-5 of the Feynman lectures (superconductivity), Feynman makes a step that I can't quite follow. To start, he writes the wavefunction of the ground state in the following form ...
7
votes
1answer
574 views

Relativistic drift velocity of electrons in a superconductor?

Is there a formula for the effective speed of electron currents inside superconductors? The formula for normal conductors is: $$ V = \frac{I}{nAq}$$ I wonder if there are any changes to this ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

What is a $p_x + i p_y$ superconductor? Relation to topological superconductors

I often read about s-wave and p-wave superconductors. In particular a $p_x + i p_y$ superconductor - often mentioned in combination with topological superconductors. I understand that the overall ...
6
votes
2answers
787 views

Why are Topological Superconductors hard to make?

Topological insulators (TI) have already been made in lab. Topological superconductors (TSC), being close cousins of TI, seem harder to make. Why is that? It seems that materials in connection with ...
6
votes
3answers
657 views

Aharonov-Bohm Effect and Flux Quantization in superconductors

Why is the magnetic flux not quantized in a standard Aharonov-Bohm (infinite) solenoid setup, whereas in a superconductor setting, flux is quantized?
6
votes
4answers
281 views

Intuitive explanation to why superconductivity breaks at high temperatures

I was recently caught up in a situation where I tried to explain to someone with only vary basic knowledge of physics (notion of atoms and electrons, etc.) what causes superconductivity. One thing I ...
6
votes
2answers
312 views

Layman explanation for superconductivity?

I'm interested in reading an explanation of superconductivity, but though I have an undergraduate degree in engineering, I'm not sure I'm up to reading a detailed mathematical treatment of the theory. ...
6
votes
3answers
625 views

Why can't a superconductor make a DC motor self sustaining?

Superconducting wire can host a low current magnetic field. I do not know if it supports a corresponding electrical field. Can a superconducting wire that sustains a current accelerate a DC motor? ...
6
votes
0answers
91 views

Is the uniqueness theorem correct in superconductivity?

There is an uniqueness theorem in electromagnetism. It says that the solution of Maxwell's Equations is determined uniquely by boundary conditions. We can treat superconductivity as a completely ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How do superconducting materials float in magnetic field?

The movie Avatar got me interested in the subject, but so far I only found sophisticated articles loaded with unfamiliar words. Is there a simple way to explain how magnetic field affects ...
5
votes
1answer
558 views

Pairing symmetry / superconducting gap symmetry

I'm not (yet :-) ) an expert on superconductors, but one term I keep hearing all the time is that of the symmetry of the gap, which can be s-wave, p-wave, d-wave etc. What exactly is the symmetry ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What do massive photons have to do with superconductivity?

I keep reading that the idea of massive photons leads to an explanation of the Meissner effect but I fail to see how photons are involved with the repulsion of fields inside a superconductor. How ...
5
votes
1answer
224 views

Seiberg-Witten theory and Superconductivity

There seems to have some (deep) relation between Seiberg-Witten theory and superconductivity. e.g. this Witten paper. Q: Could someone introduce the relations between the twos both physically in ...
5
votes
1answer
325 views

In superconductivity, is resistance =0?

If a metal shows superconductivity of electricity at definite temperature, then during superconductivity can we consider resistance of metal = 0?
5
votes
1answer
302 views

A question on the doped Kitaev-Heisenberg model?

Recently, some groups have studied the effects of doping the Kitaev model on honeycomb lattice(e.g.,http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.6681 and http://arxiv.org/abs/1109.4155) and their calculations show the ...
5
votes
1answer
386 views

Maximum electron-phonon coupling SC temperature

In many articles and web pages I found people claiming that the maximum critical temperature for superconductivity in the BCS framework is about 40K. Sometime, more accurate writers report that the ...
5
votes
2answers
262 views

Meissner Effect for Type-II Superconductors

I was wondering whether the breakdown field strength for the Meissner effect may be attributed to the Zeeman effect? I can see the latter (along with the Stark effect) to be more analogous to electron ...
5
votes
1answer
291 views

What do we know of superconductivity in thin layers?

motivated by another question, i wonder if there are special properties of superconductivity when restricted on 2D or very thin layers related to the effective permittivity in function of the ...
5
votes
1answer
548 views

London penetration depth

Which type two s-wave superconductor has the smallest London penetration depth? What is l_lamda ?
5
votes
0answers
96 views

Could energy be stored into (not extracted from) the quantum zero point field (like a battery)?

In order to explain the question clearly, I will make a short introduction. In 1962, Josephson predicted that for a sufficiently thin insulating layer, it should be possible for Cooper pairs to ...
5
votes
1answer
121 views

Superconductivity in graphene with spin orbital coupling, is it proper to let the order parameter on two sub-lattice equal?

I am reading this article: Edge superconducting correlation in the attractive-U Kane-Mele-Hubbard model. Considering just the first part of the article, where a negative-U Hubbard model with the ...
5
votes
4answers
270 views

Induction cooker + superconductive pot

What will happen if I put a super-conductive object on an induction cooker, and turn the cooker on?
4
votes
5answers
277 views

Economical ways for Cooling liquid nitrogen

To have some fun with superconductors I am planning to buy them from here. But it requires me to cool liquid nitrogen to a temperature of 77 degrees Kelvin. Can some one tell me what kind of ...
4
votes
1answer
684 views

How can I put a permanent current into a superconducting loop?

I know that you can use induction to create a current in a superconducting loop, but this only works as long as the coil that induces the field has a current flowing through it. And obviously, this ...