Milestone-Proposal:High Temperature Superconductivity
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Is the achievement you are proposing more than 25 years old? Yes
Is the achievement you are proposing within IEEE’s fields of interest? (e.g. “the theory and practice of electrical, electronics, communications and computer engineering, as well as computer science, the allied branches of engineering and the related arts and sciences” – from the IEEE Constitution) Yes
Did the achievement provide a meaningful benefit for humanity? Yes
Was it of at least regional importance? Yes
Has an IEEE Organizational Unit agreed to pay for the milestone plaque(s)? Yes
Has an IEEE Organizational Unit agreed to arrange the dedication ceremony? Yes
Has the IEEE Section in which the milestone is located agreed to take responsibility for the plaque after it is dedicated? Yes
Has the owner of the site agreed to have it designated as an Electrical Engineering Milestone? Yes
Year or range of years in which the achievement occurred:
Title of the proposed milestone:
high temperature superconductivity 1987
Plaque citation summarizing the achievement and its significance:
On this site in 1987, the discovery of a superconducting material (TBCO) at temperature above the boiling point of liquid nitrogen (77K) was made. At 93K, it was an improvement of 70 degrees over the previous record of 23K. It significantly lowers the cost and reduces the technological challenges in refrigeration. It had practical implications in electric power transmission, MRI, and magnetic levitation for mass transportation among others.
In what IEEE section(s) does it reside?
Region 5 Houston Section
IEEE Organizational Unit(s) which have agreed to sponsor the Milestone:
IEEE Organizational Unit(s) paying for milestone plaque(s):
Unit: IEEE Houston Section
Senior Officer Name: Senior officer name
IEEE Organizational Unit(s) arranging the dedication ceremony:
IEEE section(s) monitoring the plaque(s):
IEEE Section: Houston
IEEE Section Chair name: Section chair name
Proposer name: Willis King
Proposer email: Proposer email
Street address(es) and GPS coordinates of the intended milestone plaque site(s):
Science and Research Building 1, University of Houston Closest street address: 3577 Cullen Blvd., Houston TX 77004 GPS coordinates: +29° 43' 21.9318", -95° 20' 42.4968"
Describe briefly the intended site(s) of the milestone plaque(s). The intended site(s) must have a direct connection with the achievement (e.g. where developed, invented, tested, demonstrated, installed, or operated, etc.). A museum where a device or example of the technology is displayed, or the university where the inventor studied, are not, in themselves, sufficient connection for a milestone plaque.
Please give the address(es) of the plaque site(s) (GPS coordinates if you have them). Also please give the details of the mounting, i.e. on the outside of the building, in the ground floor entrance hall, on a plinth on the grounds, etc. If visitors to the plaque site will need to go through security, or make an appointment, please give the contact information visitors will need.
The YBCO compound was first synthesized and tested for superconductivity in this building.
Are the original buildings extant?
Details of the plaque mounting:
The plaque will be mounted on a wall in the ground floor entrance hall
How is the site protected/secured, and in what ways is it accessible to the public?
The intended plaque site is on the University of Houston campus, which is protected by the UH Department of Public Safety (Police Department, Security Services, and Fire Marshal). The building in which the plaque will be installed is locked during non-business hours. The intended plaque site is accessible to the public during University business hours, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday - Friday, excluding University holidays. Visitors will not need to go through security, make an appointment, or contact anyone in order to visit the plaque during business hours.
Who is the present owner of the site(s)?
The University of Houston
A letter in English, or with English translation, from the site owner(s) giving permission to place IEEE milestone plaque on the property:
A letter or email from the appropriate Section Chair supporting the Milestone application:
What is the historical significance of the work (its technological, scientific, or social importance)?
What obstacles (technical, political, geographic) needed to be overcome?
What features set this work apart from similar achievements?
References to establish the dates, location, and importance of the achievement:
U.S. Patent 7,056,866, “Superconductivity in square-planar compound systems,” C. W. Chu, filed March 26, 1987; awarded June 6, 2006 “Superconductivity at 93 K in a New Mixed-Phase Y-Ba-Cu-O Compound System at Ambient Pressure,” M. K. Wu, J. R. Ashburn, C. J. Torng, P. H. Hor, R. L. Meng, L. Gao, Z. J. Huang, Y. Q. Wang and C. W. Chu, Phys. Rev. Lett. 58, 908 (1987).
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