Record-breaking into the golf ball

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The team used high temperature superconductors that work at -320 degrees F or so — not exactly balmy, but less frigid than the -460 degrees F needed for regular superconductors.University of Cambridge scientists have broken a decade-old superconducting record by packing a 17. Image credit: University of Cambridge. With zero resistance, superconducting materials can carry up to 100 times more current than copper wires, but the resulting magnetic fields create huge internal forces. To get around it, the team modified the material’s microstructure and “shrink-wrapped” it in stainless steel.

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That produced the largest magnetic field ever trapped in a standalone material at any temperature, according to the team.6 Tesla magnetic field into a golf ball-sized hunk of crystal — equivalent to about three tons of force. Since the cuprate materials used for the record are as fragile as dried pasta, they can actually explode under the strain. The research might eventually lead to more secure and efficient power transmission, better scanners and yes, levitating monorails. What you think?