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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.
This article provides an overview of the fabrication of epitaxial, biaxially aligned buffer layers on rolling-assisted biaxially textured substrates (RABiTS) as templates for YBCO films carrying high critical current densities.The RABiTS technique uses standard thermomechanical processing to obtain long lengths of flexible, biaxially oriented substrates with smooth surfaces.The strong biaxial texture of the metal is conferred to the superconductor by the deposition of intermediate metal and/or oxide layers that serve both as a chemical and a structural buffer.Epitaxial YBCO films with critical current densities exceeding 3 106A/cm2at 77K in self-field have been grown on RABiTS using a variety of techniques and demonstrate magnetic-field-dependent critical current values that are similar to those of epitaxial films on single-crystal ceramic substrates.The RABiTS architecture most commonly used consists of a CeO2 (sputtered)/YSZ (sputtered)/Y203 (e-beam)/Ni-W alloy.
The desired texture of the base metal has been achieved in 100 m lengths and 10cm widths.Scaleable and cost-effective techniques are also being pursued to deposit the epitaxial multilayers.The results discussed here demonstrate that this technique is a viable route for the fabrication of long lengths of high-critical-current-density wire capable of carrying high currents in magnetic fields and at temperatures accessible by cooling with relatively inexpensive liquid nitrogen (up through the 77K range).
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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