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Eddy current evaluation of airframes using refrigerated SQUIDs

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1 Author(s)
Podney, W.N. ; SQM Technol. Inc., La Jolla, CA, USA

A superconductive quantum interference device, RF SQUID, fixed to the cold pad of a Heliplex HS-4 refrigerator shows a baseline noise of 1.6/spl times/10/sup -4/ flux quanta in a one hertz bandwidth at frequencies above about 25 Hz. The refrigerator adds noise below 25 Hz. Remote pickup loops couple flux to the SQUID through a cryogenic umbilical, 500 mm long, attached to the cold pad. It enables scanning a 100/spl times/100 millimeter section of airframe without moving the expander, which connects to compressors through flexible gas lines 3 m long. Thermal conduction through copper braiding in the umbilical keeps pickup loops at 5.5 K, 3 mm from an airframe at ambient temperature. Drive currents of a few amperes, oscillating at one to three hundred Hertz enable identifying 5 to 10 percent material loss through 10 to 15 mm of aluminium.<>

Published in:

Applied Superconductivity, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:5 ,  Issue: 2 )

Date of Publication:

June 1995

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