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ENEA - Fusion division

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YBCO Material

Contact: Giuseppe Celentano
e-mail: celentano@frascati.enea.it
tel.: +39 06 9400 5425
fax.: +39 06 9400 5393
crystalline structure of YBCO cell.crystalline structure of YBCO cell

In the framework of the activities concerning high critical temperature superconductors (HTS), in the last years the Superconductivity Division of ENEA reached a thorough experience as far as the development of YBa2Cu3O7-δ (YBCO), coated conductors are concerned.

YBCO-based coated conductors have been realized following the RABiTS (Rolling-Assisted Biaxially Textured Substrate (RABiTS) approach, using Ni-alloy substrates. .
Examples of the structures obtained are: NiV-NiO-CeO2-YBCO and NiV-NiO-CeO2-YSZ-CeO2-YBCO (with critical current up to 0.7 MA/cm2 at 77 K) or NiW-CeO2-YBCO (with critical current up to 1.2 MA/cm2 at 77 K and self-field). The multilayer architectures are deposited by means of physical techniques such as e-beam evaporation and pulsed laser deposition (PLD).
Recently, chemical deposition routes have been successfully employed.

thick YBCO filmSEM image of cross-section of CeO2-YSZ-CeO2-YBCO multilayer
architecture. YBCO film (on top) is about 100 nm thick.

The main purpose of these projects is to develop a continuous deposition process of long length YBCO-based coated conductors. Studies on Ca-doping of YBCO film grain boundaries have been recently carried out in order to increase the transport properties.
At the same time, a fundamental point in the study of the HTS is a close examination of the knowledge of the mechanism of flux pinning due to structural defects and to the research of the necessary introduction of artificial defects which might allow an improvement of features and performances.
These have been pursued through the introduction of BaZrO3 nanoparticles into the YBCO metrics, resulting in enhanced transport properties in presence of magnetic field.