Nexans has announced the successful conclusion of the Superconducting Coated Conductor Cable (Super 3C) Project in which a high-temperature superconducting (HTS) distribution-level power cable was developed and tested by a European consortium. In the future, HTS cables are expected to enable power links with minimised losses, thereby contributing to the reduction of greenhouse emissions.
The Super 3C Project began in June 2004 and ended with the successful test of a 30-meter one-phase HTS cable system in December 2008. The HTS cable achieved its transmitted power target of 17 MegaWatts. It is said to be one of the first cables in the world using state-of-the-art second generation (2G) HTS tapes as current carrying elements. These tapes include a thin HTS layer which constitutes a perfect conductor of electricity when cooled to -200°C.
Bruker HTS developed a proprietary HTS-copper hybrid conductor which facilitates reliable manufacturing and operation of new power cables using HTS technology. The 2G hybrid conductor utilises the advantages of both superconductivity and copper, enabling it to work and interconnect smoothly with conventional network components. In the course of the project, Nexans and Bruker HTS jointly developed and implemented sophisticated methods for assembling the 2G hybrid conductors in the cable. Altogether, Bruker HTS manufactured and tested nearly 4,000 meters of 2G hybrid superconductors for the Super 3C cable.
Nexans manufactured the Super 3C cable, including the cryogenic envelope which allows the temperature of the cable core to be maintained at -200°C in a flow of liquid nitrogen. Nexans also developed and manufactured specific cable terminations for this project.