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Data from: Superconductivity Found in Meteorites

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Data from: Superconductivity Found in Meteorites

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Cite This Work

Wampler, James; Thiemens, Mark; Cheng, Shaobo; Zhu, Yimei; Schuller, Ivan K. (2020). Data from: Superconductivity Found in Meteorites. UC San Diego Library Digital Collections.


This data details the discovery and analysis of superconducting material in two meteorites. These are the first superconducting materials found in extraterrestrial samples and the superconducting phases are characterized as alloys of lead, tin and indium.

The collection here is divided into components which consist of different analysis techniques. See the following paragraphs for a brief description of how these techniques were used together to analyze the meteorite samples.

A diverse population of meteorites was selected and powder samples were dislodged or scraped from the meteorite, for measurement in MFMMS. Superconducting candidate samples were identified in two meteorites (Mundrabilla and GRA 95205) from peaks in the Magnetic Field Modulated Microwave Spectroscopy (MFMMS) response. The grains with the most superconducting material were isolated by subdividing these samples and measuring the subsamples in the MFMMS.

These subsamples were subsequently measured with Vibrating Sample Magnetometry (VSM) to confirm that they were superconducting and images from an optical microscope were used to analyze the sample volume, which allowed an estimate of the average superconducting volume fraction in superconducting grains.

The samples were measured with EDX in an SEM. This data showed that the likely superconducting phases were alloys of indium, lead and tin. To confirm this, EDX measurements were taken in a TEM, imaging the inside of a grain that exhibited superconductivity. In addition, the EDX data from the SEM was compared to the database of superconductors, SUPERCON, to determine all of the known superconducting compounds that could be made from the elements observed using EDX.

Creation Date
  • 2016 to 2019
Date Issued
  • 2020
Principal Investigator

This work was supported by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research (grant FA9550-14-1-0202); and the UCSD Chancellor's Associates (Mark Thiemens). Transmission electron microscopy work at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Science, Division of Materials Science and Engineering, under Contract No. DE-SC0012704.



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Identifier: Ivan K. Schuller:

Identifier: Shaobo Cheng:

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