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Development of needle-shaped grains from Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+ xwith high critical current density suitable for making superconducting wires

Applied Superconductivity
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/s0964-1807(98)00054-4
  • Chemistry
  • Physics


Abstract We present a grain microstructure for Bi(2212) consisting of only giant needle-shaped grains of around 1.5 mm length and 100 μm diameter. We study the structural and chemical changes suffered by a conventional ceramic Bi(2212) sample in the course of the thermal treatment used to obtain those giant needle-shaped grains. For that, different samples of the same batch were treated with incomplete thermal treatments, and the resulting samples were analysed by using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), optical microscopy, energy dispersed spectroscopy (EDS), inductively coupled plasma (ICP) and X-ray diffraction (XRD). To verify the superconducting nature of the needle-shaped grains, we have performed magnetization, resistivity, and critical current measurements on the original ceramic sample, and on that formed as giant needle-like grains. The critical temperature of these last grains is nearly the same as that of the ceramic sample ( T c∼90 K), which is a high value for the Bi(2212) compound. The critical current density ( J c) of the needle-shaped grains is around 2500 A/cm 2 at 77 K and in absence of applied magnetic field, a value comparable with that presented for the best wires and thick films. Not only are the shape and the size of these grains very suitable for making superconducting wires, but also the superconducting properties, T c and J c, are both high enough to be confident about the possibility of improving the actual Bi(2212) superconducting wires for high current applications.

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