LATHAM, N.Y., July 18 -- Intermagnetics General Corporation's Energy Technology subsidiary, IGC-SuperPower, reported yesterday at the Annual DOE Technical Peer Reviews substantial progress in efforts to ultimately produce devices designed to provide more efficient, reliable and environmentally responsible solutions for transmission and distribution of electric power. SuperPower is currently developing commercial-level manufacturing capabilities for second-generation high-temperature superconductors and is collaborating with Waukesha Electric systems to develop a 5/10 MVA HTS transformer that is intended to power Waukesha's main manufacturing facility in Wisconsin.
"We remain on target to achieve our 2002 calendar year milestone of producing HTS tape rated at 100 amp-meter in greater than one-meter lengths, as well as a target of 1000 amp-meter performance in greater than 10 meter lengths by the end of calendar 2003" said Philip J. Pellegrino, Intermagnetics' sector president -- Energy Technology. "These targets are consistent with our previous projections to achieve commercial production of second-generation HTS conductor by mid- decade."
Pellegrino also noted that SuperPower is nearing completion of its portion of work on the Waukesha transformer and expects to ship finished HTS coil assemblies for integration at Waukesha before September.
Steady Improvement In HTS Production
"Since demonstrating continuous tape processing in our second-generation HTS pilot manufacturing facilities in January, the performance and the length of HTS tapes we have processed has steadily improved," Pellegrino said. "Using continuous reel-to-reel processing in all fabrication and quality monitoring steps, meter-long second-generation HTS tapes have been produced with an end-to-end performance of 90 amps at liquid nitrogen temperature. A 30 cm segment of this tape exhibited a performance of 110 amps. Shorter segments of coated conductor have also been produced in a continuous process with performance of 135 amps over several centimeters.
"This demonstration of good performance in meter-long tape lengths in pilot manufacturing facilities is an important step in our scale up of second- generation HTS technology to full-fledged manufacturing," Pellegrino said. IGC-SuperPower is collaborating with Los Alamos and Argonne National Laboratories in efforts to scale up second-generation HTS manufacturing. SuperPower holds exclusive licenses in the relevant process technology with Los Alamos.
SuperPower also has been working with Waukesha Electric Systems, the largest domestic manufacturer of power transformers, on developing the 5/10 MVA HTS transformer. SuperPower completed winding the HTS coils at the end of calendar year 2001.
"The project has made substantial progress this calendar year with a major breakthrough in the development of an electrical insulation system capable of operating at both cryogenic temperatures and high voltage," Pellegrino said. "We are nearing completion of the integration of the three transformer coil sets, one for each of the three-phase electrical system. Final assembly of the transformer will be completed at Waukesha followed by extensive factory acceptance testing through year-end 2002. We expect the device to be fully operational by early next year."
Pellegrino commented that the goal for 2003 is to complete functional demonstration and testing as an integral part of Waukesha's power delivery to its main manufacturing plant.