2016 Superconductivity

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Physics
Okuma Satoshi 
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Course description and aims

When superconductors are cooled to an extremely low temperature, electric resistant goes to zero, and electrical and magnetic properties are exhibited which are not usually seen in metals. Students will learn that the reason for this lies in quantum nature appearing on a macroscopic scale. After getting an overview of several properties of conductivity in this course, students will study Bose-Einstein condensate, the macro-description of superconductors called GL theory, the micro-description of superconductivity called BCS theory, electrical mechanics of superconductivity, magnetic properties of quantized flux, etc. in type II superconductors, as well as unconventional superconductivity and the latest topics related to superconductivity.

Student learning outcomes

[Learning outcomes] Students will learn fundamentals of physics on superconductivity, which is a macroscopic quantum phenomenon that appears at low temperature.

[Theme] This course focuses on unusual electronic and magnetic properties that superconductors show at low temperature. Students are expected to understand the undelying physics and learn how to describe them.


Bose-Einstein condensation, zero resistance, Meissner effect, macroscopic quantum phenomenon, quantized flux, type-I/type-II superconductor, Jpsephson effects, GL theory, BCS theory, unconventional superconductors

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Handouts will be distributed at the beginning of each class. Students are given exercise problems related to the lecture to better understand the contents. The midterm exam (45 min) is scheduled during the regular lecture period.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Properties of superconductivity Explain characteristic properties of superconductors.
Class 2 Bose-Einstein condensation - Superfluidity and superconductivity Explain the concept of Bose-Einstein condensation and its relation to superfluidity and superconductivity.
Class 3 Macroscopic (phenomenological) description of superconductivity - GL theory Explain how the GL theory describes the superconducting properties neat Tc.
Class 4 Microscopic description of superconductivity - BCS theory Explain physical quantities of superconductivity deduced from the BCS theory.
Class 5 Electrodynamics of superconductor Describe the basic equations for electrodynamics of superconductivity.
Class 6 Magnetic properties of type-II superconductors Explain why each magnetic flux in type-II superconductors is quantized and these flux lines form the lattice.
Class 7 Unconventional superconductivity Specify the examples of unconventional superconductors and explain their characteristics.
Class 8 Recent topics on superconductivity Explain recent topics of superconductivity you have interest in.


To be specified by the instructor.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

To be specified by the instructor. Handouts will be distributed.

Assessment criteria and methods

Based on exams and reports.

Related courses

  • PHY.C442 : Superfluidity
  • PHY.C444 : Quantum Transport

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites.

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