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Chemical solution processing of Gd2Zr2O7 (GZO) thin films via sol-gel and metalorganic decomposition (MOD) precursor routes have been studied on textured Ni-based tape substrates. Even though films processed by both techniques showed similar property characteristics, the MOD-derived samples developed a high degree of texture alignment at significantly lower temperatures. Both precursor chemistries resulted in exceptionally dense, pore-free, and smooth microstructures, reflected in the cross-sectional and plan-view high-resolution scanning and transmission electron microscopy studies. On the MOD GZO buffered Ni–3at.% W (Ni–W) substrates with additional CeO2/YSZ sputtered over layers, a 0.8-μm-thick YBa2Cu3O7−δ (YBCO) film, grown by an ex situ metalorganic trifluoroacetate precursor method, yielded critical current, Ic (77 K, self-field), of 100 A/cm width. Furthermore, using pulsed-laser deposited YBCO films, a zero-field superconducting critical current density, Jc (77 K), of 1 × 106 A/cm2 was demonstrated on an all-solution, simplified CeO2(MOD)/GZO(MOD)/Ni–W architecture. The present study establishes GZO buffers as a candidate material for low-cost, all-solution coated conductor fabrication.
A new series of rare earth-niobate, RE3NbO7 (RE=Y,Gd,Eu), buffer layers were developed for the growth of superconducting YBa2Cu3O7−δ (YBCO) films on biaxially textured Ni–W (3 at.%) substrates. Using chemical solution deposition, smooth, crack-free, and epitaxial RE3NbO7 (RE = Y,Gd,Eu) films were grown on cube-textured Ni–W substrate. YBCO film with a critical current density of 1.1 × 106 A/cm2 in self-field at 77 K was grown directly on a single Gd3NbO7-buffered Ni–W substrate using pulsed laser deposition.
Epitaxial lanthanum zirconate (LZO) buffer layers have been grown by sol-gel processing on Ni–W substrates. We report on the application of these oxide films as seed and barrier layers in coated conductor fabrication as potentially simpler, lower cost coated-conductor architecture. The LZO films, about 80–100-nm thick, were found to have dense, crack-free surfaces with high surface crystallinity. Using 0.2-μm YBCO deposited by pulsed laser deposition, a critical current density of 2 MA/cm2 has been demonstrated on the LZO films (YBCO/LZO/Ni–W). Using 0.8-μm YBCO deposited using metal organic decomposition, a critical current density of 1.7 MA/cm2 and a critical current of 135 A/cm have been demonstrated on the LZO barrier layer with a sputtered CeO2 cap layer (YBCO/CeO2/LZO/Ni–W). These results offer promise to replace several of the vacuum-deposited layers in the typical coated conductor architecture (YBCO/CeO2/YSZ/Y2O3/Ni/Ni-W).
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