Comparative Study of the Continuous and Batch Thermal Processing of MgB2 Wires

Bartek A. Glowacki*, Mehmet Kutukcu, Serdar Atamert, Chris Dhulst, Jan Mestdagh, Wim Van Vooren, Arend Nijhuis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

The last stage of the manufacturing process requires complex reactive diffusion formation process of MgB2 in the presence of SiC nanoparticles. Continuous thermal processing was adopted to produce long length MgB2 in situ wires with a homogeneous mixture of micron-sized Mg, nanosized B, as well as SiC dopant powders. This process has enabled the formation of MgB2 superconducting compound in a relatively short time. Traditional superconductor batch processing requires the wire batch to be heat treated in dedicated large furnaces. Additionally, such a batch process requires controllable slow heating-up, dwelling, and cooling down procedures to ensure uniformity of the superconducting properties along the wire length. Such a prolonged reactive diffusion process does require lower dwelling temperature and can potentially prevent full utilization of the doping materials, resulting in less effective pinning centers formation. On the other hand, continuous wire thermal processing enables rapid formation of the doped MgB2 with full utilization of the dopant. Also, in the continuous process, the moving thermal front brings complex dynamics to Mg-B, C-B, Mg-Si interaction during MgB2 formation processes. The manuscript presents a comparative study of the reactive diffusion kinetics, the microstructural formation of the doped MgB2 compound, and their Jc(B, T) characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6200604
JournalIEEE transactions on applied superconductivity
Volume29
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2019

Keywords

  • Continuous process
  • Critical current
  • Direct current (DC)
  • Gaseous helium cooling
  • Heat treatment
  • MgB wires
  • MRI
  • Superconducting cables
  • Twisting

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