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A 700-mm bore superconducting magnet was built and operated in our laboratory to demonstrate the feasibility of newly developed superconductor wire for fabricating MRI magnets. The magnet, an assembly of 10 coils each wound with a reacted and s-glass insulated wire 1-km long, was immersed in solid nitrogen rather than in a bath of liquid cryogen. This magnet was designed to operate in the temperature range 10-15 K, maintained by a cryocooler. A combination of this ldquowiderdquo temperature range and immersion of the winding in solid nitrogen enables this magnet to operate under conditions not possible with a low temperature superconductor (LTS) counterpart. Tested individually at 13 K, each coil could carry current up to 100 A. When assembled into the magnet, some coils, however, became resistive, causing the magnet to prematurely quench at currents ranging from 79 A to 88 A, at which point the magnet generated a center field of 0.54 T. Despite the presence of a large volume (50 liters) of solid nitrogen in the cold body, cooldown from 77 K to 10 K went smoothly.
Date of Publication: June 2008