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super conductor technique belongs to internationally advanced technology ,and china takes the leading position in the area of high temperature superconductor. according to prediction of authority, superconductor technique will be widely applied in this century in various regions, science, technology and daily life, and will bring a revolutionary reform in science and technology. It will make promising progress in ELF communication if superconductive technology can be used into ELF communication.

ELF communication is a unilateralism command system of communication. It is mainly composed of high power transmitter at shore end and receive system on submarine . High power transmitter consists of transmitting antenna , matching equipments and transmitter

In ELF communication the efficient of transmitter is very low, TX power of transmitter is over MW while the available energy is several watts, when the signal is propagated into the sea under 100 meters, it is just in the class of NV, There are two critical technicals in ELF communication connect with superconductor technology in my mind. Matching technology in high-power transmitting; How to get very small signal in receiving technology;
Source: CEA


An element, inter- metallic alloy, or compound that will conduct electricity without resistance below a certain temperature. Resistance is undesirable because it produces losses in the energy flowing through the material. Once set in motion, electrical current will flow in a closed loop of superconducting material making it the closest thing to perpetural motion in nature, scientists refer to superconductivity as a macroscopic quantum phenomenon.



The Type 1 category of superconductors is mainly comprised of metals and metalloids that show some conductivity at room temperature. Type 1 superconductors - characterized as the "soft" superconductors - were discovered first and require the coldest temperatures to become superconductive. They exhibit a very sharp transition to a superconducting state (see above graph) and "perfect" diamagnetism - the ability to repel a magnetic field completely.

Type 2 compound, an alloy of lead and bismuth.

Type 2 superconductors - also known as the "hard" superconductors - differ from Type 1 in that their transition from a normal to a superconducting state is gradual across a region of "mixed state" behavior. Since a Type 2 will allow some penetration by an external magnetic field into its surface, this creates some rather novel mesoscopic phenomena like superconducting "stripes" and "flux-lattice vortices".

Transport vehicles such as trains can be made to "float" on strong superconducting magnets, virtually eliminating friction between the train and its tracks. An area where superconductors can perform a life-saving function is in the field of biomagnetism. A double-relaxation oscillation SQUID (Superconducting Quantum Interference Device) for use in Magneto encephalography. Electric generator generator. are more efficient then conventional

Elf communication is the communication at very low frequency Elf means (extremly low frequency )communication ELF waves can propagate around the world within the spherical waveguide formed by the Earth and the ionosphere with minimal attenuation (around 1 dB per 1000 km [3]), and can penetrate sea water to useful depths with a relatively low attenuation (0.3 dB/m at 76 Hz [4]).

It is worth recalling that the ELF communication channel is one-way, only: from the shore to the submerged submarine

ELF communication faced a tremendous technical hurdle in its implementation: when the wavelength is measured in thousands of kilo meters, any practical transmitting antenna is electrically very small and, therefore, suffers from poor radiation efficiency. To meet the challenge of transmitting a useful amount of ELF signal play an important role . In ELF communication the receiving antenna on the submarine took the form of a long insulated cable, towed behind the submarine , the two transmitter locations have been frequently targeted by peace activists and environmentalists.

ELF communication belongs to strategic communication. In this frequency range, shore communication equipment can provide reliable and safe communication at low digital transfer rate for submarine within area of several thousands kilometers and 100 m under water. TYPES OF ANTENNA 1. Trailing antenna

ELF wave propagation in the sea is in the form of horizontal polarization, component of electric field E and that of magnetic field H are generally in perpendicularity. Currently receiving antennas in ELF mostly belong to trailing-wire antenna, which receive electric field signal E, and E component in the direction of antenna cable axis is zero. Therefore, if trailing-wire antenna is used to obtain signal in ELF, it will be restricted by direction of submarine.

2. ferromagnetic-core solenoid antenna-

In the range of ELF, another kind of receive antenna is solenoid antenna, which is usually called ferromagneticcore solenoid antenna and which receives H-ground wave signal. If practical communication requirements with regard to maximum seasonal noise and maximum regional noise are to be met, sensitivity of H-field sensor in submarine must be at least some -200 dB (relatively to 1 V/m Hz )

3.Superconductor antennaSuperconductor antenna is in fact a Superconductor magnetic sensor which is highly sensitive to H field. In 1962,Josephson pointed out that, a combination of superconductor insulator-superconductor will lead to superconductor current under zero voltage, which is now called DC Josephson effect . Superconducting Quantum Interference Device (SQUID) is a sensor with high sensitivity which works on this characteristic. It is usually formed by 2 Josephson knots, which makes use of coherence effect of 2 currents to enlarge the current. Making them connecting with superconductor line to make loop antenna, the antenna we called in ELF range is formed (Fig. 4 and Fig. 5).Figure

SQUID-superconducting quantum interference device. SQUID is a kind of magneticvoltage transmission element, if a simple input transformer is applied, it is changed into currentvoltage amplifier. Sensitivity of this kind of amplifier is extremely high, band width can reach the level ofMHz without phase distortion and noise is very low. Forexample, SQUID can detect very weak magnetic field, its resolution can be as high as some 10-14 Gauss. Currently ,Department of Physics of Beijing University has developed RF high-temperature magnetic sensor with resolution of 10-13Gauss. Its very small, just like a coin.

Currently in the application of SQUID, most challenging technique is refrigeration. The remaining major problem associated with the use of SQUIDS is their cryogenic environment. Hull (must be prevented by excessive noise)installation must prevent additional noise, therefore SQUID shall be located in a separate vehicle towed a considerable distance behind the submarine and kept a considerable distance behind the submarine.

refrigeration must either be board the towed vehicle or the vehicle must contain sufficient reservoirof liquid nitrogen so as to cool the SQUID .

In the past, the refrigeration must use Helium, the critical temperature is 4.2 K, and nowadays with development of superconductive technology, the refrigeration can use Nitrogen to instead of Helium, and the critical temperature is77 K, operation and cost are more simplified and shorten.

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SQUID keeps low temperature in liquid Nitrogen of Dewar flask, and normal working time under superconducting status is some 90 days. Thus in a strategic deployment of submarine, there is no need to replenish liquid Nitrogen, which can meet the requirement of long time concealed navigation and successive signal receiving. In Fig. 7, SQUID made by physics department of Beijing University is working long for 90 days without replenishing n liquid nitrogen

Figure 7. SQUID made by Physics Department of Beijing University is working.

In summary, in the frequency range of ELF, superconducting antenna, compared with trailing-wire antenna and ferromagnetic-core solenoid, its advantage is huge. The latter two antennas have to work very close to water surface with poor concealing performance. Structure of trailing-wire antenna is long, cable is as long as over 600m which also restrict operability, and which can not achieve all directional receiving. Whereas sensitivity of ferromagnetic core solenoid is not enough high. Therefore, perspective of superconducting antenna is promising.

1. Navy Pulls Plug on Project ELF, The Chief Engineer (online archives)

2. E. L. Beach, ELF: To Communicate With a Submerged Submarine, Defence Electronics, April 1980, pp. 54-61.
3. R. E. Collin, Antennas and Radio Wove Propagation, New York, McCraw Hill, 1985. 4. R. Imrie, Navy to Shut Down Radio Transmitters, USA Today 5. Superconductor sensor, Sensor World, vol. 4, pp. 17, 1998.