High-Power Superconductors



Program:
OPEN 2012
Award:
$3,828,075
Location:
Lapeer,
Michigan
Status:
ALUMNI
Project Term:
03/05/2013 - 06/04/2016

Critical Need:

Outdated and inefficient transmission components are stretching our electrical grid system to its limit. There is a critical need to develop advanced conductors that can efficiently handle the high power demand of a modern grid. High-temperature superconductive materials hold great promise for grid applications, but their widespread use has been hindered by high manufacturing cost.

Project Innovation + Advantages:

Grid Logic is developing a new type of electrical superconductor that could significantly improve the performance (in $/kA-m) and lower the cost of high-power energy generation, transmission, and distribution. Grid Logic is using a new manufacturing technique to coat very fine particles of superconducting material with an extremely thin layer—less than 1/1,000 the width of a human hair—of a low-cost metal composite. This new manufacturing process is not only much simpler and more cost effective than the process used to make today’s state-of-the-art high-power superconductors, but also it makes superconductive cables easier to handle and improves their electrical properties in certain applications.

Potential Impact:

If successful, Grid Logic would create superconductors for high-power electric utility applications that are more energy efficient at 10% of the cost of today’s conductors.

Security:

The widespread use of superconductors in utility applications would increase the reliability and efficiency of the U.S. electric grid.

Environment:

More efficient superconductors could help reduce U.S. electricity consumption, and in turn reduce the harmful emissions created by coal-fired power plants.

Economy:

The success of this project could give the U.S. a technological lead in advanced electrical manufacturing.

Contact

ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Patrick McGrath
Project Contact:
Dr. Matthew Holcomb
Press and General Inquiries Email:
ARPA-E-Comms@hq.doe.gov
Project Contact Email:
holcomb@grid-logic.com

Partners

North Carolina State University

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Release Date:
11/28/2012