Nav: Home

Scientists discover a link between superconductivity and the periodic table

April 10, 2018

Scientists from Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and Skoltech have demonstrated the high-temperature superconductivity of actinium hydrides and discovered a general principle for calculating the superconductivity of hydrides based on the periodic table alone. The results of their study were published in The Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters.

High-temperature superconductivity is a phenomenon of zero electrical resistance in certain materials at temperatures above -196°C (the temperature of liquid nitrogen) that physicists, chemists and materials scientists worldwide have been intensely researching for decades, as room-temperature superconductors open up vast prospects for the power industry, transport, and other technology-driven sectors. Currently, the record holder in high-temperature superconductivity is hydrogen sulfide (H3S), which functions as a superconductor at 1.5 million atmospheres and temperatures of down to -70 oC. Such pressure levels can only be attained in a lab environment, not in real life, and the temperature is way below room temperature, so the search continues for new superconductors. Perhaps an even higher-temperature superconductivity can be attained in metal-hydrogen compounds. Yet the link between chemical composition and superconductivity was unclear, leaving scientists to puzzle out by trial and error.

A group of chemists led by Artem R. Oganov, Professor at Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and Skoltech, discovered that certain elements capable of forming superconducting compounds are arranged in a specific pattern in the periodic table. It was established that high-temperature superconductivity develops in substances containing metal atoms that come close to populating a new electronic subshell. Metal atoms inside the crystal are assumed to become highly sensitive to the positions of the neighboring atoms, which would result in strong electron-phonon interaction ? the underlying effect of conventional superconductivity. Based on this assumption, the scientists supposed that high-temperature superconductivity could occur in actinium hydrides. Their supposition was verified and confirmed: superconductivity was predicted for AcH16 at temperatures of -69-22 oC at 1.5 million atmospheres.

"The very idea of a connection between superconductivity and the periodic table was first put forward by Dmitry Semenok, a student at my lab. The principle he discovered is very simple and it is really amazing that no one had hit upon it before," says Artem Oganov.

Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

Related Superconductivity Articles:

Looking at light to explore superconductivity in boron-diamond films
More than a decade ago, researchers discovered that when they added boron to the carbon structure of diamond, the combination was superconductive.
Discovery in new material raises questions about theoretical models of superconductivity
The US Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory has successfully created the first pure, single-crystal sample of a new iron arsenide superconductor, CaKFe4As4, and studies of this material have called into question some long-standing theoretical models of superconductivity.
Superconductivity with two-fold symmetry -- new evidence for topological superconductor SrxBi2Se3
Topological superconductivity is the quantum condensate of paired electrons with an odd parity of the pairing function.
Portable superconductivity systems for small motors
Superconductivity is one of modern physics' most intriguing scientific discoveries.
Graphene's sleeping superconductivity awakens
The intrinsic ability of graphene to superconduct (or carry an electrical current with no resistance) has been activated for the first time.
Superconductivity of pure Bismuth crystal at 0.00053 K
Scientists at TIFR Mumbai have discovered superconductivity of pure Bismuth crystal.
When crystal vibrations' inner clock drives superconductivity
Superconductivity is like an Eldorado for electrons, as they flow without resistance through a conductor.
Physicists induce superconductivity in non-superconducting materials
Researchers at the University of Houston have reported a new method for inducing superconductivity in non-superconducting materials, demonstrating a concept proposed decades ago but never proven.
A new spin on superconductivity
Researchers from the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have made a discovery that could lay the foundation for quantum superconducting devices.
Superconductivity: After the scenario, the staging
Superconductivity with a high Tc continues to present a theoretical mystery.

Related Superconductivity Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...