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Researchers discover a superconductor that conducts electricity in only one direction

Researchers discover a superconductor that conducts electricity in only one direction

from Valentine Sattler
Researchers at Delft University of Technology have discovered a new superconductor that conducts electricity in only one direction. One possible application of this technology is in future computers, which could become faster and more efficient with superconductors.

The resistance of individual circuit elements is an important brake in the further development of computer chips. All junction lines and transistors in the chip have a limited conductivity, which leads to heat dissipation and slows down the maximum possible clock rate.

The new superconducting diode

The solution to this problem might be to use superconductors, which have no (large) resistance and thus theoretically allow for greater computing power. But the problem here is the process: Superconductors require extremely low temperatures and usually allow current to flow in both directions. So you can already have fonts in one CPU Replace, but not transistors.

Researchers at TU Delft in the Netherlands have come close to solving this problem. According to a statement from the university, Professor Mazhar Ali (center of the photo) and his team discovered a way to conduct current in a superconductor in only one direction without an additional magnetic field. To do this was between two superconductors 2D Material His name is Nb3Br8.

But in terms of practice, operating and production temperature is still an issue with this “superconductive diode”. Accordingly, so far the researchers have produced only a few corresponding structures and have not tested operation at temperatures above 77 K (-196 ┬░C). If the single-use superconductor also operates at this temperature, then operation with normal nitrogen cooling will be possible.

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If the process is successful at a higher temperature, then the possibilities for mass production will be examined. For the future, the research team sees the possibility of using quantum computers based on this technology in data centers. Unfortunately, despite the recent hack, there is still a long way to go before that happens.

source: Delft Technical University via technology spot