STI is concentrating on superconducting magnet applications that include NGEM solutions. NGEMs will play an instrumental role in the future competitiveness of electrical grids, industrial manufacturing, and many other applications that utilize industrial scale devices in excess of 5000 horsepower. By offering unprecedented improvements in motor and generator efficiency, NGEMs will provide a solution that addresses the current limitations of conventional technologies. NGEMs are expected to significantly improve the efficiency of industrial electric motors, which use approximately 70% of the electricity consumed by U.S. manufacturers and nearly a quarter of all electricity consumed nationally, according to the Department of Energy (DOE). By utilizing these highly efficient NGEMs, industrial power consumers will benefit from a substantially reduced power infrastructure footprint independent of utility grid build-out projects. The projected cost savings from this greatly improved efficiency last for decades and can easily justify the initial CAPEX of these NGEMs.
The key enabling technology for NGEMs is superconducting wire that can handle very high electrical currents in the presence of a magnetic field (also knowns as 2G HTS wire) such as our Conductus® high-performance magnet wire. Conductus offers a competitive advantage both in economics and performance by consistently demonstrating record-breaking current carrying capability.
Energy Storage An NGEM as an energy storage device at a solar plant, which could be activated at night to provide accumulated power to the grid.
DOE NGEM Project
STI is the prime recipient of a $4.5 million, three-year project award that commenced in June 2017 under the DOE’s broad goal of advancing American manufacturing competitiveness by improving industrial motor efficiency to significantly reduce energy usage and the cost of operation. STI is working on the project in conjunction with TECO Westinghouse Motor Company (TECO), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.), and the University of North Texas (UNT).
“TWMC recognized the immense value of superconductor technology for high-power electric machines early, and we are committed to their commercialization. We look forward to collaborating to develop the transformational technology needed to achieve commercial viability of high power superconducting next-generation electric machines.”
-- Pat Rogers, President, TWMC
“STI’s goal of high performance at low cost can be a game changer for a wide range of applications, not only at temperatures near liquid nitrogen, but also at lower temperatures.”
-- Joseph V. Minervini, Plasma Science and Fusion Center Assistant Director, MIT
"By bringing together university knowledge and capabilities from MIT and UNT with STI, a world-class manufacturer of superconducting materials, and TWMC, the end user and device maker with over 100 years of experience in motor design and application, the full range of research and development to product manufacturing and wide-scale commercialization of superconducting materials will be achieved."
-- Dr. Marcus L. Young, Assistant Professor Materials and Science Engineering, UNT
The NGEM DOE project has three main objectives:
The ultimate program objective is to produce wire that delivers 1,440 amps per centimeter width at 65 Kelvin in a 1.5 Tesla field.
STI is the project leader for this program and brings together industry leaders to support the DOE project goals. Each of the participants brings a key attribute required for the project.
In conjunction with its partners TECO, M.I.T, and UNT, STI has successfully achieved key first-year project milestones.