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BASF & Deutsche Nanoschicht to Introduce Innovative Process for Superconducting Coatings

Published on 2012-05-18. Author : SpecialChem

LUDWIGSHAFEN and RHEINBACH, Germany -- High-temperature superconductors can be manufactured much more efficiently and with less environmental impact by means of the innovative production process developed by technology company Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH. Superconductors carry current virtually without loss, so they allow potentially huge savings in generating and transporting electricity. BASF Future Business GmbH supports Deutsche Nanoschicht as a cooperation partner.

The wires for high-temperature superconductors are manufactured by a coating process developed by Deutsche Nanoschicht that uses chemical solution deposition. The ceramic layers produced in this way have superconducting properties because they feature flawless crystal orientation. "Chemical deposition processes are technically challenging but hold enormous economic potential," explained Dr. Michael Bäcker, Managing Director of Deutsche Nanoschicht. Industrial and energy sector customers, in particular, can benefit from the company's patented solutions. Bäcker: "Wherever large volumes of electricity are generated, transported or used, the technologies we have developed facilitate innovative power engineering systems that operate efficiently with little impact on resources." Manufacturers of generators and motors or of cable and mains supply networks for metropolitan areas will be particularly interested in superconductor technology. Among other applications it enables energy to be harvested highly efficiently from renewable resources by means of wind and hydro power generators, especially in offshore wind farms.

Superconductors Facilitate Extremely Compact Systems

High-temperature superconductors conduct current without resistance at temperatures just above the boiling point of liquid nitrogen (77 Kelvin/-196 degrees Celsius). This temperature can be reached reliably at little cost and maintained during operations by means of commercial cryo technology. As the current carrying capacity is high compared to copper, extremely compact and lightweight systems become an option in electrical engineering.

Innovative Process for Superconducting Coatings

Deutsche Nanoschicht has developed a unique process for manufacturing superconductors cost-effectively. Customized formulations are deposited on a substrate by means of continuous processes. The crystallographic structure of the substrate is effectively transferred to the ceramic layers being deposited so that all crystals of the superconductor obtained are perfectly aligned to each other. The coating consequently features the ideal electrical properties of a monocrystal but does not show its mechanical properties such as brittleness or impact sensitivity.

Technology Platform for a Broad Range of Applications

BASF Future Business and Deutsche Nanoschicht intend to bring this innovative coating technology to market together. The superconductor manufacturing process allows a broad range of applications far beyond the energy sector. "We believe that the coating technology of Deutsche Nanoschicht is a promising technology platform. Combined with our expertise in formulation, it can form the basis for the development of new system solutions for sensor and energy technology as well as electronics," said Dr. Ralf Nörenberg, member of the scouting team at BASF Future Business. "By cooperating with Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH we can bring together our expertise in chemicals and the innovative coating process of our partner."

About Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH

A leading specialist for the development of high-temperature superconductors and chemical coatings, Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH is establishing innovative approaches to distributing and using electricity cost-effectively and with little impact on resources. Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH was founded by Dr. Michael Bäcker in Rheinbach, Germany, on November 24, 2011. The general manager and 20 employees started business operations on January 1, 2012. Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH has evolved from Zenergy Power GmbH.In founding his company Dr. Michael Bäcker took over all plant and equipment, all staff and the entire know-how of the superconductor wire department of Zenergy Power GmbH. Right from the start the team has been continuing operations successfully at Deutsche Nanoschicht GmbH.

About BASF Future Business GmbH

BASF Future Business GmbH, a 100 percent subsidiary of BASF SE, was founded in April 2001. It aims to open up business areas with above-average growth rates that lie outside BASF's mainstream activities. The company focuses on chemistry-based new materials, technologies and system solutions. BASF Future Business GmbH commissions research from BASF's R&D units and cooperates with startup companies, industrial partners, universities and potential customers. Other alternatives include the acquisition of direct stakes, joint ventures with partner companies or provision of venture capital via the subsidiary BASF Venture Capital GmbH.

About BASF

BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, and agricultural products to oil and gas. They combine economic success, social responsibility and environmental protection. Through science and innovation they enable their customers in almost all industries to meet the current and future needs of society. Their products and system solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring healthy food and nutrition and helping to improve the quality of life. They have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF posted sales of about €73.5 billion in 2011 and had more than 111,000 employees as of the end of the year.

Source: BASF

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