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Germanium Hydride to Become High Temperature Viable Superconductor


super5The evolution of energy storage is not enough if we don’t also evolve the energy transportation methods. That’s why superconductors are not only good for us, but are also necessary in some applications where heat and energy loss, in general, have no place. It’s a known fact that for a material to become superconductive (to have zero electrical resistance), it must be cooled to temperatures close to zero Kelvin, very hard to reach in real conditions.

Artem Oganov and a team of researchers from the Laboratory of Crystallography of ETH Zurich predict that germanium hydride can become a superconductor at relatively high temperatures, around 196°C (77 Kelvin) – the boiling point for nitrogen, very easy to get. Such materials are called “unconventional superconductors”, because the mechanism of their superconductivity is not yet understood.

The highest transition temperature found for a superconductor is at 166K (-107°C). The material used is a cuprate, and it has the same consistency as graphite (very soft), thus it’s difficult to work with them. Added to this, cuprates are often very toxic.

[via ScienceDaily]

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