Northwestern researchers show how impurities can increase the maximum accelerating field of superconducting radio-frequency cavities, a finding with huge potential cost advantages.

It turns out that imperfection may be the perfect way to push the limits of a key component in high-energy particle accelerators.

The new finding made by researchers at the Center for Applied Physics and Superconducting Technologies (CAPST) and supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF) furthers scientific understanding of the physics responsible for the ultimate performance limit of superconducting radio-frequency (SRF) cavities. Niobium is currently the material of choice for SRF cavities because of its superconducting properties.

Redirecting to the Press Release…

‘Dirty’ Superconductors Make Better Particle Accelerators