Surrounded by nearly 400 years of history, 600 scientists and engineers gathered in Hartford CT for the 2019 CEC/ICMC conference. Held in the Connecticut Convention Center, with plenary sessions in the adjoining Marriot Hotel, CEC/ICMC hosted cryogenic experts and industry leaders sharing information and ideas from July 21-25.
Sunday featured the opportunity for those arriving early to attend short courses hosted by the Cryogenic Society of America and ICMC. The CSA short courses consisted of Property and Cooler Considerations for Cryogenic Systems, Cryocooler Fundamentals and Getting Started with Cryogenic Fuels–Liquefied Hydrogen and Natural Gas. At the same time, ICMC’s short courses explored conductors, flux pinning and critical current, epoxy resins, superconductor stress considerations, cryogenic structural material properties, cryogenic power electronics and explanations of good technical writing and presentation.
Andy Marsh of Plug Power, Inc. spoke at the first plenary session on “The Growing Hydrogen Economy and the Need for Liquid Hydrogen.” His presentation explored the ever-increasing number of industries developing processes and applications that rely on liquid hydrogen and included pitfalls and considerations needed to foster this growing trade.
Tuesday’s plenary speaker was Mykhaylo Filipenko of Siemens AG who addressed the future of electric and hybrid-electric aircraft in a “pragmatic view.” The talk included a review of the current landscape and extrapolated on the future of aviation with more efficient and environmentally friendly aircraft, including the technological advancements and policies needed to achieve an electric aviation industry.
The third plenary featured Thomas Glasmacher, Facility for Rare Isotope Beams director, discussing information about FRIB and the MSU Cryogenic Initiative. He detailed the history of the MSU cryogenic program and the ongoing construction and preparation for FRIB, including design and building schematics, along with planned FRIB applications and experiments.
Zach Hartwig of the MIT Plasma Science and Fusion Center discussed SPARC—a compact, high field, net fusion energy experiment—and the High-field Path to Fusion Energy at the final plenary. Hartwig covered the production of high-temperature superconductors, specifically REBCO coated conductors, and how the technologies recently reached commercial maturity at the scale and performance levels required to build large bore, high-field magnets which would enable a breakthrough opportunity to accelerate fusion energy.
The traditional oral and poster sessions were held throughout the week. Both the poster sessions and breaks were held in the main exhibit hall, which allowed attendees more time to interact with exhibitors. The exhibit hall held 48 manufacturers, distributors and cryogenic industry suppliers and was open throughout the conference. This year’s conference featured a special tribute to Dr. Glen McIntosh for his outstanding contributions to the field of cryogenics and his dedicated attendance at every CEC held since its inception. Ray Radebaugh, retired, NIST Boulder, Steven Van Sciver formerly of FSU, Charlie Danaher of HPD and Laurie Huget of CSA gave introductory notes before McIntosh himself delivered a history of cryogenics and the conception and development of the CEC conference.
The Samuel C. Collins award for outstanding contributions to the identification and solution of cryogenic engineering problems went to Professor Venkata Rao Ganni, Director of MSU Cryogenics Initiative and FRIB. The CEC award for Best Research Paper went to “Numerical study on the flow and heat transfer characteristics of slush nitrogen in a corrugated pipe” by Y. J. Li, S. Q. Wu and T. Jin. The award for Best Application Paper was given to “A highly reliable cryogenic mixing pump with no mechanical moving parts” by W. Chen and A. L. Niblick.
ICMC presented the Best Superconducting Materials Paper award to “Improvement of small to large grain A15 ration in Nb3Sn PIT wires by inverted multistage heat treatments” by C. Segal, C. Tarantini, P. J. Lee and D. C. Larbalestier. The award for Best Structural Materials Paper was given to “Temperature dependence on tensile properties of Cu-40mass%Fe dual phase alloy” by N. Koga, W. Zhange, O. Umezawa, J. Sas and K. P. Weiss. Professor Kohei Higashikawa received the Cryogenic Materials Award for Excellence and Professor Teruo Matsushita received the Cryogenic Materials Award for Lifetime Achievement.
CSA’s award ceremony honored Joel Fuerst of SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Michael DiPirro of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center as Fellows of the Cryogenic Society of America—persons of distinction in cryogenics that have made notable, valuable contributions to the field of cryogenics. The William E. Gifford Award was presented to Ram Dhuley of Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. The award is named in honor of Mr. Gifford, co-inventor of the Gifford-McMahon cycle and founder of Cryomech, Inc. Nominees must be actively performing research using a pulse tube or Gifford-McMahon cycle cryocooler as a key component. Srinivas Vanapalli from the University of Twente received the George T. Mulholland Award for Excellence in Cryogenic Engineering.
The Robert W. Vance Award—established to honor persons for their dedication and long-term commitment to the advancement of CSA—was awarded to Laurie and Werner Huget of the Cryogenic Society of America, Inc.
The award for Best Paper from Cryogenics journal was given to “Theoretical and experimental investigation of the three stage Stirling-type pulse tube cryocooler using cryogenic phase-shifting approach and mixed refrigerator matrices” by H. Dang, D. Bao, T. Zhange, J. Tan, R. Zha, J. Li, N. Li, Y. Zhao and B. Zhao.
The joint CEC-ICMC Klaus & Jean Timmerhaus Scholarship Award went to Carl Bunge of Washington State University while the Donna Jung Scholarship Award was presented to Jordan Raymond. I. Hossain, J. Jian. M. Matra, U. P. Trociewitz, J. Lu, F. Kametani, D. Larbalestier and E. Hellstrom won the Student Meritorious Paper Award for “Effect of sheath material and reaction overpressure on Ag protrusions into the TiO2 insulation coating of Bi-2212 round wire.”