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CSIC and UAB will build the most advanced superconductor cable for electricity network
Date:1/7/2008

This release is available in Spanish.

The SUPERCABLE project, jointly presented by the Institute of Material Science of Barcelona (ICMAB-CSIC), at the UAB Research Park, the UAB Department of Physics and the company Nexans, received the NOVARE Prize in Energy Efficiency from the Spanish energy company ENDESA. The 500,000 prize will be invested in developing a superconductor cable, the first in the south of Europe and the most advanced in the world of its kind.

The main objective of this project is the construction of a 30m cable and the terminals needed to connect it to the network, which will be built with the high-temperature superconductor material BSCCO. This is the most advanced cable that exists in terms of distribution (20 kV), since its current value is higher than that obtained up to date, 3200 Amperes RMS, and therefore can transport the electrical strength of 110 MVA, i.e. five times more than a conventional copper cable of the same dimensions. Its construction is planned to be finished before the year 2010. Given that this will be the first superconductor system installed in our country, the SUPERCABLE project also will play a highly significant role in validating this new technology.

The project's framework includes the work of scientists developing new materials based on a second generation of superconductors, known as YBCO, which will be able to transport electricity up to 50 times the capacity of BSCCO cables and 100 times that of copper wires. Moreover, the loss in electricity of second-generation superconductors in comparison to BSCCO cables will be reduced tenfold.

The fact that superconductor technology transports a larger amount of electricity than conventional systems makes it a viable alternative to the efficiency needs of the world's electrical systems, which presently channel 40% of the world's total consumpt
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Contact: lvar Snchez
alvar.sanchez@uab.cat
34-935-811-132
Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona
Source:Eurekalert  

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