The Phenomenon Of Superconductivity: A Feasibility Study For Business

Julian E. Thrash

This study is now available at


Why should American industries risk future viability in order to invest in superconductivity? This independent study explored this question in order to reach a more informed conclusion. The tendency for American firms is to plan for short-term profits at the expense of research and development programs. By cutting research and development funds, firms are losing a proprietary knowledge base necessary to compete in a dynamic environment. A loss of proprietary knowledge in the field of science, severely handicaps a firm in its drive for success.

The information presented in this study is an attempt to give the average corporate executive the facts necessary to come to the most appropriate conclusion. In order to make more informed decisions, the theory, feasibility and applications, commercialization, and government support for superconductivity were thoroughly evaluated. A more efficient method of research and commercialization was outlined with industry, government, and universities working in a more coordinated effort.

An analysis of the current situation suggests that U.S. industries have fallen behind their Japanese counterparts in the magnitude of their research into future HTS applications. The Federal government must act directly to promote the future commercialization of superconductivity applications. Without a stronger Federal emphasis, many American firms will happily adopt a wait-and-see attitude that may be detrimental to our future economic well-being. viii