Experiments with superconductors

The Friday before last, PhD student Jessica Spurrell from the Institute of Cryogenics at Southampton University visited the Science department to talk about her research in the field of superconductors. Jessica brought with her some liquid nitrogen (at a temperature of -200°C) with which she demonstrated how to freeze the plastic coating from electrical flex, leaving just bare wire, froze a banana and then used it to hammer a nail in a piece of wood, and made a magnet levitate over a frozen metal block. She then spoke on the uses of superconductors such as Maglev (magnetic levitation) trains, MRI scans, computing and electrical generation. After the lecture, students had great fun trying out the demos for themselves. View photos.

By Mary Shotter, Biology Technician

Experiments with superconductors


Bedales School is one of the UK’s top independent private co-education boarding schools. Bedales comprises three schools situated in Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire: Dunannie (ages 3–8), Dunhurst (ages 8–13) and Bedales itself (ages 13–18). Established in 1893 Bedales School puts emphasis on the Arts, Sciences, voluntary service, pastoral care, and listening to students’ views. Bedales is acclaimed for its drama, theatre, art and music. The Headmaster is Keith Budge.

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