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Substances when cooled below a critical temparature Tc

completely lose all traces of electrical resistance in static
electric fields called superconductors
Time constant of any decay of the cureent which is
controlled by L,R is so large.
It was observed by physicist Kamerlingh Onnes in metal
mercury in 1911.At the time he was the first person to
create and work with liquid helium and wanted to see how
metals behave at such extremes.
superconductivity is a quantum mechanical phenomenon.
Classification Of Superconductors
By their response to a magnetic field :
Type1 & type2.

By the theory to explain them: they can be
conventional (if explained by BCS theory),
unconventional(If not).

By the critical temparature: high temparature and low

By the material:They can be chemical
elements,alloys,ceramics,organic superconductors.

Periodic Table Showing
Superconducting Elements
perfect diamagnetism vs superconductivity
If a conductor already had a
steady magnetic field through it
and was then cooled through
the transition to a zero
resistance state, becoming a
perfect diamagnet, the
magnetic field would be
expected to stay the same.
Remarkably, the magnetic
behavior of a superconductor
is distinct from perfect
diamagnetism. It will actively
exclude any magnetic field
present when it makes the
phase change to the
superconducting state.
Meissner's Effect
When a material makes the transition from the normal to
superconducting state, it actively excludes magnetic
fields from its interior; this is called the Meissner effect.
Zero resistance would imply that if you tried to
magnetize a superconductor, current loops would be
generated to exactly cancel the imposed field (Lenz's
A mixed state Meissner effect occurs with Type II
One of the theoretical explanations of the Meissner
effect comes from the London equation. It shows that the
magnetic field decays exponentially inside the
superconductor over a distance of 20-40 nm. It is
described in terms of a parameter called the London
penetration depth.
Mixed Meissner's Effect

Critical Magnetic Field
The superconducting state cannot
exist in the presence of a
magnetic field greater than a
critical value, even at absolute
This critical magnetic field is
strongly correlated with the critical
temperature for the
superconductor, which is in turn
correlated with the bandgap.
Type II superconductors show two
critical magnetic field values, one
at the onset of a mixed
superconducting and normal state
and one where superconductivity