First Room-Temperature Superconductor
Photo credit: University of Rochester
Scientists at the University of Rochester have synthesized the first room-temperature superconductor, which could be used in future electronics and transportation technologies. Put simply, superconductors transmit electricity without resistance, enabling the current to flow without any energy loss. However, all previously discovered superconductors must be cooled to very low temperatures, making them impractical for most uses. Read more for a video and additional information.

The team found the first superconductor that operates at room temperature where the material is superconducting below temperatures of about 15° Celsius (59° Fahrenheit). For now, this phenomenon can only occur at extremely high pressures, limiting its practical usefulness.

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“It’s a landmark. In a couple of years,” he says, “we went from 200 [K] to 250 and now 290. I’m pretty sure we will reach 300,” said José Flores-Livas, a computational physicist at the Sapienza University of Rome that develops models that explain high-temperature superconductivity.