A superconductor is a material that can conduct electricity with zero resistance. This means when the conductors become superconductors below the critical temperature there will not be any loss of energy due to heat, sound, etc. Most of the materials should be in extremely low temperatures in order to become superconductors. Research is underway to find materials that will behave as semiconductors at higher temperatures. Currently, an excessive amount of energy is wasted in the cooling process while making semiconductors, this makes it inefficient and uneconomical.
4 Properties of Superconductors
Property 1: Critical temperature/Transition temperature
The temperature below which the material changes from conductors to superconductors is called critical temperature or transition temperature. The transition from conductors to superconductors is sudden and complete.
Property 2: Zero Electric Resistance/Infinite Conductivity
In the superconducting state, the material has zero resistance. When the temperature of the material is reduced below the critical temperature, its resistance suddenly reduces to zero. Mercury is an example of a superconductor that shows zero resistance below 4 kelvin.
Property 3: Expulsion of Magnetic Field
Below the critical temperature, superconductors do not allow the magnetic field to penetrate inside it. This phenomenon is called Meisser Effect.
Property 4: Critical Magnetic Field
The certain value of the magnetic field beyond which the superconductors return to conducting state is called the critical magnetic field. The value of the critical magnetic field is inversely proportional to the temperature. As the temperature increases, the value of the critical magnetic field decreases.