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NIST Fellow Deborah Jin in her laboratory at JILA where she studies ultracold atomic gases and their similarities to high-temperature superconductors. The atoms are initially trapped and cooled in a glass cylinder located below the copper coils. (Credit: Burrus/NIST)

Described in Nature Physics, the new research lends more support to the idea that JILA studies of superfluidity (flow with zero friction) in atomic gases may help scientists understand far more complicated high-temperature superconductors, solids with zero resistance to electrical current at relatively high temperatures. Known high-temperature superconductors only superconduct well below room temperature, but a detailed understanding of how the materials work may one day lead to practical applications such as more efficient transmission of electricity across power grids.

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Category: Science