SRL(Superconductivity Research Laboratory) is the R&D division of ISTEC, responsible for materials research and development activities necessary to realize the practical applications of superconducting technologies involving superconducting tapes and wires, electronic devices and power generation equipment.
The Advanced Materials and Physics division utilizes complex evaluation technologies for the research and development of advanced superconducting materials and superconducting wires.
The Superconducting Tapes and Wires division is responsible for developing superconducting wires for use in potential future superconducting power devices. The Electronic Devices division is aimed at the commercial realization of high-performance electronic devices by exploiting the characteristics of a superconductor. The division also employs highly sensitive magnetic SQUID sensors for developing various non-destructive testing methods. Under this division, the Low Temperature Superconducting Laboratory has made significant progress towards the practical applications of Single Flux Quantum (SFQ) circuits employing Niobium-based low temperature superconducting materials.
The Electric Power Equipment division places efforts for the potential introduction and diffusion of electrical power generation equipment utilizing Yttrium-based superconducting wires.
Director General's Statement
Superconductivity Research Laboratory
International Superconductivity Technology Center
The Superconductivity Research Laboratory (SRL), which is an attached laboratory to the International Superconductivity Technology Center (ISTEC) for research and development on superconductivity, was established in the summer 1988 as Japan's only full-scale research institution and facility specializing in superconductivity. Since its foundation SRL has made significant research progress under the leadership of the first Director General, Dr. Shoji Tanaka. I, Yuh Shiohara, having served as Director General since 1st February 2009, have promoted the advancement of research and development aimed at the realization of a society utilizing superconductor technology. As of 1st April 2012 ISTEC changed its legal status to a public interest incorporated foundation. At this juncture, SRL of ISTEC would like to renew our pledge to further commit ourselves to the mission of promoting advancement of research and development of superconductivity. We seek your continued support and guidance with giving us the benefit of your honest and unrestrained comments and opinions for the future.
Following from the discovery of high temperature superconducting materials in 1986, a project on "Research & Development of Superconducting Materials and Devices" was initiated by the (then) Ministry of International Trade and Industry in 1988. In 1998, a project entitled "Research and Development of Fundamental Technologies for Superconductor Applications" was launched and supported by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry through the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). Consequently, from 2008 onwards, a 5-year project entitled "Materials and Power Applications of Coated Conductors (M-PACC)" has been undertaken via NEDO support. In this project, the research and development of Yttrium-based superconducting tapes (coated condutors; C.C.) and international standardization activities have been vigorously advanced, with the aim of the realization of superconducting power equipment (SMES, Cable, Transformer) utilizing Yttrium-based coated conductors.
On the other hand, with regards to thin film superconducting applications applied to the electronic-devices field, development has been undertaken in areas involving the design of devices, process technology and system development of mainly those that employ Yttrium-based high-temperature superconducting thin films. We have been successful in developing a highly sensitive magnetic sensor by making use of our world-class advanced multi-layered film fabrication process, which has now progressed focusing on a sensor-based detection system as well as metals exploration system. From 2009 onwards, in collaboration with universities and industries, we have undertaken development for advanced biotechnology and non-destructive sensing technology utilizing the high-temperature superconducting SQUID entrusted to us by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST). Additionally, device development involving Single Flux Quantum (SFQ) large-scale integrated circuits utilizing niobium metal superconductors have been made. Active research into advanced technologies that exceed the performance characteristics of current technologies has been ongoing in reducing power consumption, high-speed operation and greater sensitivities. Moreover, with the industry-government-academia collaborations, research and development activities have advanced for the two themes of "Exploration for Novel Superconductors and Related Functional Materials, and Development of Superconducting Wires for Industrial Applications (led by Professor Hideo Hosono of Tokyo Institute of Technology)" and "Quantum Information Processing Project (led by Professor Yoshihisa Yamamoto of National Institute of Informatics)" under the "Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology (FIRST)" commissioned by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS).
The Great East Japan Earthquake on 11th March 2011 triggered a huge tsunami resulting in serious accidents in a nuclear power station. Japan has experienced an unprecedented national crisis resulting in a state of emergency the likes of which we have never encountered before. It is anticipated more than ever that energy-saving equipment and renewable energies will be introduced and promoted and would be the drivers for earthquake disaster reconstruction. In the future and based upon the research outcomes over the past twenty years or more, SRL as the core research institution for superconductivity will strive to continue its research and development efforts in activities aimed at the full-scale realization of high-temperature superconducting materials and technologies, which form part of the advanced technology category for Japan's growth strategy. Superconductor technology is anticipated to be the new material and technology fit for the 21st century, therefore SRL would like to promote greater international collaboration in research and development and contribute to the world in the environment and energy field by building a new energy society to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, as well as reduce the consumption of critical materials including rare earth metals.
1st April 2012