Device for Measuring the Thermal Cycling Degradation in 2G Tapes for Electrical Power Applications

The standard electrical engineering applications of high-temperature superconductors (HTSs) as coils (SMESs), motors, power cables, fault current limiters (SFCLs), etc., usually involve operating conditions under which the critical current of HTS tapes might be degraded. The dependence of such magnitude on mechanical properties, frequency variations, or thermal changes is a key concern for the accurate design of those devices.

Two of the parameters affecting the critical current when the superconductor operates in broad temperature ranges are the number and the speed of transitions from the superconducting to the normal state. In order to determine how these parameters affect the critical current, we have designed an automatedĀ dippingĀ setup in liquid nitrogen to reproduce heating and cooling cycles on superconducting tapes. In this paper, this device is described, and several tests on a short sample of YBCO coated conductor are reported and analyzed.