This is a manifestation of the Meissner Effect. When a superconductor reaches a critical temperature (usually very cold, 1 - 70 K) it expels all magnetic field lines. So if you place it on top of a magnet, it will float. It will float on a cushion of magnetic field. Additionally it will experience almost no friction so if you make a circular track of magnets it will levitate around it for quite a long time. And look awesome doing it. That vapour trail isn’t propulsive. It’s just how cold that superconductor is, it’s condensing the air around it.

2

Ever heard of quantum locking? That’s the crazy demo you see above.

Curious scientist Boaz Almog is making an extremely cold superconductor (that super-thin disk) hover — dead still — above a magnet. And like a mad scientist’s version of Hot Wheels, he’s pushing it into a frictionless dash around and around a magnetic track.

See, superconductors are unique in two ways: They allow electrical currents to pass through without friction, and they hate magnetic fields. Once a material is in a state of superconductivity — which comes from being very, very cold — it tries to stay in that state.

So when you put it over a magnet, the superconductor locks in place to prevent any strands of magnetic field from moving around inside it and generating heat. And if you put it over a circular magnetic loop and give it a gentle nudge, it gets locked in a mesmerizing loop.

Pretty cool. No pun intended. Watch the full demonstration »

Oh, infrared heating furnace. You glow so good.

A lot of the materials we make here at Brookhaven are too small and too precise for traditional tools — good luck trying to hammer atoms into place or screw nanoscale films together. So sometimes we don’t build materials, we grow them. 

Case in point: that glowing chamber above is used to grow superconducting crystals. The infrared image furnace focuses infrared light onto a rod, melting it at temperatures of about 4,000 degrees Fahrenheit. Under just the right conditions, that liquefied material recrystallizes as a single uniform structure. One of our physicists, Genda Gu, actually pioneered techniques that grow some of the largest single-crystal high-temperature superconductors in the world.

The clincher is that these sensitive crystals aren’t in a hurry to take shape. The materials grown by those gold-lined instruments typically take a month to form.

The science that stumped Einstein

In 1908, the physics world woke up to a puzzle whose layers have continued to stump the greatest scientists of the century ever since. That year, Dutch physicist Kamerlingh Onnes cooled mercury down to -450° Fahrenheit and discovered—to his astonishment—that it could conduct electricity perfectly. And then for the next 50 years, no one could explain why.

Ordinary wires, even really good ones like copper, lose up to a third of the electricity they carry over long distances. But these materials, called superconductors, don’t lose any energy. Ever. You could start a current in a loop of superconducting wire and it would circle around, theoretically, forever.

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Watch on the-science-llama.tumblr.com

Levitating Superconductor on a Mobius Strip

The Crab Nebula

The Crab Nebula and the pulsar at its centre are endlessly fascinating. The pulsar is a neutron star, with the same mass as our Sun but only the size of a city. It rotates 30 times per second, flashing like a lighthouse as it does so. It is very nearly, but not quite, an ideal clock, without any outside influence to disturb it. At Jodrell Bank Observatory we have been watching the pulsar for over 40 years, timing it without missing a beat while it rotated more than 30 billion times. This sounds boring, but it is not much trouble as we only use a small radio telescope for our daily observations. We provide a daily record of its behaviour to other observatories, and especially to telescopes on spacecraft which observe pulses from the pulsar at X-ray and gamma-ray wavelengths. Putting together the results from our radio observations with data from the opposite end of the electromagnetic spectrum has proved remarkably rewarding.

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Syncope
  • Syncope
  • Friend King
  • Supercollision
Play

There is a fanfic called Designations Congruent With Things by cleanwhiteroom and it describes an album by the fictional band The Superconducting Supercolliders.  This is my version of one of those songs.

All sounds by me.  Lyrics by cleanwhiteroom.  Kindly mastered by elementals.

Download a version of this for free at my Bandcamp page.

SEA OF DIRAC
  • SEA OF DIRAC
  • Allison Stock
  • Supercon^2 (ducting)(lliders)
Play

SEA OF DIRAC // This song is about a doomed relationship, and what happens when matter and antimatter collide. The Dirac equation (i.e. the Dirac Sea) expands upon the Shrodinger equation. It also relates quite nicely to when someone who is impossible to love and someone who is impossible to hate try to make something work, and instead end up just ruining everything.

For those of you playing at home, in an alternate universe, this is a “cover” of the song made famous by a band that doesn’t exist. In reality, CWR wrote the lyrics, I wrote the music (and a couple of phrases), and we had a grand time collaborating on this.

(art is by narcomanic, and I hope it’s okay that I’m using this! I didn’t ask, but I’m too obsessed with it to let it be. SO BEAUTIFUL, RIGHT?)

Superconductivity

A superconductor is a material, which is able to conduct electricity, and transport electrons between atoms with no resistance, which means no energy would be wasted as heat, sound or any other form once the material has reached the temperature at which it becomes superconductive. Roughly half the elements in the periodic table are able to be superconductive.

There are two main types of superconductors:

          Type 1: These consist of the basic conductive elements, which are             normally used in common appliances such as electrical wiring. They           have a critical temperature between 0.0003 and 7.8 Kelvin,                         standard pressure.

          Type 2: These are composed of metallic compounds, for example             lead, and have a higher critical temperature, the highest known                   being 135 Kelvin.

 

Whilst Type 2 superconductors can be penetrated by magnetic fields, type 1 cannot.  

The most interesting thing is that superconducting wires lose no energy to resistance and if the wire is bent into a loop it is able to hold charge indefinitely. However, the downside is that superconductors requite very cold temperatures, only working below 130 Kelvin (-143 degrees Celsius).  Research is currently being carried out to develop materials that become superconductive at higher temperatures.

Modern superconductors are used for their superior magnetic filed for things like maglev trains, proton accelerators and hopefully, in the near future, in emerging power technologies, for instance high energy wind turbines.

 

Uses

  • Superconductivity is used in many cases, for instance in magnetic-levitation and on transport vehicles such as trains, which can use superconductivity to make them “float”, thus virtually eliminating friction between the train and the tracks.
  • Superconductivity can even be used to save lives, in areas such as biomagnetism.
  • It is a non-invasive way of helping doctors determine what is happening inside of the human body- through an MRI scan. Through the process of impinging a strong superconductor-derived magnetic field into the human body, hydrogen atoms present in the body’s water and fat molecules are forced to accept energy from the magnetic field. The hydrogen atoms then release this gained energy at a frequency, which is then detected and displayed graphically by a computer.

Sources:

http://superconductors.org/uses.htm

http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/energy/superconductivity.htm

http://ffden-2.phys.uaf.edu/113.web.stuff/Travis/what_is.html

Breakthrough: One step closer to nuclear fusion power station

The superconductivity research group of the University of Twente (UT) has made a technological breakthrough crucial to the success of nuclear fusion reactors, allowing for clean, inexhaustible energy generation based on the workings of the stars in our galaxy.

The crux of the new development is a highly ingenious and robust superconducting cable system. This makes for a remarkably strong magnetic field that controls the very hot, energy-generating plasma in the reactor core, laying the foundation for nuclear fusion. The new cables are far less susceptible to heating due to a clever way of interweaving, which allows for a significant increase in the possibilities to control the plasma. Moreover, in combination with an earlier UT invention, the cables are able to withstand the immense forces inside the reactor for a very long time. The increased working life of the superconductors and the improved control of the plasma will soon make nuclear fusion energy more reliable: the magnet coils take up one third of the costs of a nuclear fusion power station. The longer their working life, the cheaper the energy will be. The research is a project within the context of the Green Energy Initiative of the University of Twente.

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Dreaming Correctly
  • Dreaming Correctly
  • The Superconducting Supercolliders
  • Dreaming Correctly EP
Play

The last track of the last Supercos album for the last chapter of Designations.  How poignant is that?  This is the longest and most experimental of the Supercos tracks; think of it as a love letter to human brinksmanship.

Music written and performed by me.  Lyrics are an even 1/3 split between myself, cleanwhiteroom, and Wallace Stevens.  Additional vocals by allyspock.  Mastered by elementals.  Coverart by littletinheart.  As always, this song can be downloaded for free on my Bandcamp page (DON’T PAY FOR IT!!!) and streamed on the cleanwhiteroom website.

John Bardeen, William Shockley and Walter Brattain, The World’s First Transistor (Bell Laboratories), 1947.

Heliolatry
  • Heliolatry
  • Allison Stock
  • Superconduction
Play

HELIOLATRY // This song is about navigating the peaks and valleys of your own mental landscape, and maybe getting a bit lost in the extremes. Music by me, lyrics by cleanwhiteroom, cello and banjo by Friend King, and mastered by the master herself, elementals. Cover art by narcomanic. Available to download from cleanwhiteroom.com.

To be perfectly honest, this song was the most difficult song I’ve ever done. While a part of me wants to feel a little bit guilty for all the torment CWR, elementals and I slogged through to get this beast finished, I feel like it’s worth it. So yeah. Heliolatry: more painful than flying headfirst into the sun, but totally worth it. Nice work, team!

                     Art from surrealist photographer Randy Scott Slavin’s 

                                    “Alternative Perspective” series.

 

                      FOURTH DIMENSIONAL RULES OF ENGAGEMENT

                                            Strictly Confidential

WARNING: DUE TO THE UNCERTAINTY OF DIMENSIONAL TRAVEL CERTAIN RULES MUST BE FOLLOWED. DO NOT TRY THIS ON YOUR OWN UNTIL YOU HAVE BEEN FULLY CERTIFIED.  DUE TO THE ONLY RECENT RESEARCH INTO DIMENSIONAL TRAVEL BY THE TEAM OF THE SSC ( Superconducting Super Collider ).  ALL FACTORS HAVE NOT BEEN FULLY EXPLORED.

Rule #3  Rely on your Survival Training to adapt to your new environment. In order to be able to interact in this new environment, you must improvise in order to establish yourself into this new dimension without changing anything that can affect Time Sequence. This means that it will be necessary for you to find an accommodating being in order to impersonate them until you decide to return via the Time Portal.   IMPERSONATION TECHNIQUES:  1)You may use the technique of identity theft by isolating yourself from your victim, or  2) you can use the technique to body possession if the being is a willing candidate. 

MOST IMPORTANTLY, ONCE YOU ENTER THE FOURTH DIMENSION, BE SURE TO CLOSE THE DOOR OF THE TIME PORTAL BEHIND YOU.

This Tumblr: Wayward Wanderer site is not responsible for any accidents or mishaps of any kind resulting from an unauthorized person attempting to enter a FOURTH DIMENSIONAL SPACE with or without certification training.  

 All  text copyrights are restricted by: Drifterdax 2012 

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