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Magnet programs at BNL, LBNL and FNAL have observed instabilities in high Jc Nb3Sn strands and magnets made from these strands. This paper correlates the strand stability determined from a short sample-strand test to the observed magnet performance. It has been observed that strands that carry high currents at high fields (greater than 10 T) cannot sustain these same currents at low fields (1-3 T) when the sample current is fixed and the magnetic field is ramped. This suggests that the present generation of strand is susceptible to flux jumps (FJ). To prevent flux jumps from limiting stand performance, one must accommodate the energy released during a flux jump. To better understand FJ this work has focused on wire with a given sub-element diameter and shows that one can significantly improve stability by increasing the copper conductivity (higher residual resistivity ratio, RRR, of the Cu). This increased stability significantly improves the conductor performance and permits it to carry more current.
Date of Publication: June 2005