Jim Thompson, a professor of physics and an adjunct member of the distinguished R&D staff in the Materials Science and Technology Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, together with colleagues from ORNL, is a winner of a 2009 R&D 100 Award for a new kind of superconducting wire that seamlessly carries AC electric current at higher temperatures with little frictional loss. R&D 100 Awards, presented by R&D Magazine, are given for revolutionary technologies newly introduced to the market, representing the most innovative ideas of the year.
Thompson and his colleagues are also working with Project Hydra, a collaboration sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security to develop high temperature superconducting wires that can carry large amounts of power while automatically suppressing power surges. The ultimate goal of Project Hydra is to enable a super-secure electrical grid in the United States.
Thompson—a specialist in understanding the physical properties of solids, particularly their superconducting or magnetic properties—is a fellow of the American Physical Society and lead author of a U.S. Department of Energy award for “Significant Implications for Energy Related Technologies.” He is a past recipient of a Nano 50 Award for work on superconducting wires at high temperatures and is co-author of more than 270 publications.
M.J. Gouge, R.C. Duckworth, J.A. Demko, C.M. Rey, J.R. Thompson, D.L. Lindsay, J.C. Tolbert, D. Willen, H. Lentge, C. Thidemann, I.D. Kledal, W.L. Carter (2009), “Testing of 3-meter prototype fault current limiting cables,” IEEE Transactions on Applied Superconductivity 19: 1744.
J.R. Thompson, O. Polat, D.K. Christen, D. Kumar, P.M. Martin, J.W. Sinclair (2008), “Wide-range characterization of current conduction in high-Tc coated conductors,” Applied Physics Letters 93: 042506.
T. Aytug, M. Paranthaman, K.J. Leonard, K. Kim, A.O. Ijaduola, Y. Zhang, E. Tuncer, J.R. Thompson, and D.K. Christen (2008), “Enhanced flux pinning and critical currents in YBa2Cu3O7-δ films by nanoparticle surface decoration: Extension to coated conductor templates,” Journal of Applied Physics 104: 043906.
M. M. Özer, Y. Jia, Z. Zhang, J.R. Thompson, H.H. Weitering (2007), “Tuning the quantum stability and superconductivity of ultrathin metal alloys,” Science 316: 1594.
S. Kang, A. Goyal, J. Li, A.A. Gapud, P. M. Martin, L. Heatherly, J. R. Thompson, D. K. Christen, F. A. List, M. Paranthaman and D. F. Lee (2006), “High Performance High-Tc Superconducting Wires,” Science 311: 1911 .
A.O. Ijaduola, J.R. Thompson, R. Feenstra, D.K. Christen , A.A. Gapud, and X. Song (2006), “Critical currents of ex-situ YBa2Cu3O7-δ thin films on rolling assisted biaxially textured substrates: thickness, field and temperature dependencies,” Phys. Rev. B 73: 134502.
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