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Scientist discovers superinsulators

Posted on Saturday, December 01 2007 @ 21:00:43 CET by

James Valles, a researcher at Brown University, claims he has discovered a superinsulator:
A Brown University researcher, James Valles, claims to have discovered Cooper pairs in superinsulators that, when cooled near absolute zero, offer infinite resistance--acting as perfect blocks to conduction. Superinsulators may someday be wired together with superconductors to create supercircuits that generate zero heat.

"We have found that Cooper pairing can be responsible not only for conducting electricity with zero resistance, but also for blocking the flow of electricity altogether," said Valles.

The Brown researchers specifically set out to discover superinsulators by crafting bismuth, which is a superconductor as a bulk material, into a thin film only four atoms thick. They fabricated a template for the thin film which was perforated with 50 nanometer holes, enabling the conditions to be set for transforming the bismuth from a superconductor into a superinsulator.
More info at EE Times.



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