Emanuela Barzi

Allen Rusy (left) and Dan Turrioni, from the Superconductor R&D Group, inspect the cabling machine used to make Nb3Al superconducting cable. One hundred years ago, In April 1911, Dutch scientist Kamerlingh Onnes discovered superconductivity. While investigating the electrical resistance of pure mercury at very low temperatures, Onnes discovered that mercury’s resistance dropped suddenly to zero in the vicinity of 4.2 Kelvin (see graphic). Scientists found that similar transitions happened in other metals and dubbed the phenomenon superconductivity. Since 1911, we…