comment on this article

New material could eliminate loss in electrical power transmission

New material could eliminate loss in electrical power transmission

Researchers at Riken Advanced Science Institute and the University of Tokyo have demonstrated a new material that they claim could eliminate loss in electrical power transmission.

The team's method for solving this energy problem is based upon the first realisation of an exotic type of magnetic semiconductor first theorised less than a decade ago – a magnetic topological insulator.

The work is closely related to the quantum Hall effect, which is known to produce dissipationless electricity channels but requires large, cumbersome magnets to produce fields 100,000 larger than the earth's magnetic field for its operation.

To overcome this, the researchers used the exotic type of semiconductor which exhibited a similar effect known as the quantum anomalous Hall effect. This stems from the semiconductor's own magnetisation rather than from an external one.

At the heart of this effect is the interaction between magnetic ions and the topological insulator's current carrying particles, known as Dirac fermions, which are unique because they behave as if they have zero mass.

The team says that the device it produced demonstrates that this new type of dissipationless transport can be harnessed in prototype transistors. Although the method currently requires cryogenic conditions, the team hope that improvements in material design will make operation possible at higher temperatures.

Simon Fogg

Comment on this article

This material is protected by MA Business copyright See Terms and Conditions. One-off usage is permitted but bulk copying is not. For multiple copies contact the sales team.

What you think about this article:

Add your comments


Your comments/feedback may be edited prior to publishing. Not all entries will be published.
Please view our Terms and Conditions before leaving a comment.

Related Articles

Graphene scaffold

While lithium metal-based batteries are attractive in theory, practical ...

Driving innovation

Oxford University has a reputation not only as an internationally recognised ...

NI Trend Watch 2014

This report from National Instruments summarises the latest trends in the ...

Power management IC

A power management IC, known as the ARG82800, has been launched by Allegro ...

MicroTech 2018

On April 9-10, 2018 the MicroTech exhibition will be held at the Royal Holloway ...

Device Packaging

On March 5-8, 2018, the 14th International Conference and Exhibition on Device ...

Get to market faster

A quick look at using Vicor's PFM and AIM in VIA packaging for your AC to Point ...

Battery technology

The move to battery powered vehicles is gathering speed. The UK has joined ...

The project begins

Recently, Stephen Doran took up his position as CEO of the Compound ...

Terence Watson

Ask Terence Watson about power electronics and you're left in no doubt of his ...