Due to the ongoing pandemic, the Applied Superconductivity Conference (ASC) 2020 was held virtually this year from October 24 to November 7. Over the two weeks, attendees were given access to the same events and information that draw the international crowd for a “normal” convention, albeit in a digital format. Organizers provided a complete conference experience for the over 1,600 registered online attendees. Hosted via Whova® and iPosterSessions®, attendees were given virtual access to a catalogue of prerecorded, live and time-released content that covered all things superconductivity.
From December 7-10, more than 160 researchers, engineers, students and industry professionals gathered virtually on Zoom® to discuss and share information on all aspects of cryocoolers during the 21st International Cryocooler Conference, ICC21. Held every other year since 1980, ICC’s mission is to “enhance cryocooler development by promoting increased communication between worldwide researchers within both the cooler development community and the cryocooler user community.” While this year’s virtual format may have been different, the enthusiasm and engagement displayed by all attendees was “business as usual.”
An interesting cryogenics question was posted in the physics section of the popular forum, Stack Exchange: "What would happen if a 10-kg cube of iron, at a temperature close to 0 kelvin, suddenly appeared in your living room?" Now, cryogenics enthusiasts around the world are offering up their explanations. We welcome the CSA community to voice their reasoning on the forum and promote cryogenics around the world.
On October 28, FormFactor, a leading provider of essential test and measurement technologies along the full integrated circuit life cycle, announced it had completed the acquisition of High Precision Devices, Inc. (HPD, CSA CSM), a leader in precision cryogenic instruments. Located in Boulder CO, HPD is a respected supplier of scientific instruments, especially cryogenic probe systems and cryostats capable of extremely low temperatures. The business has been growing rapidly to serve emerging quantum computing, superconducting computing and ultra sensitive sensor markets which operate at temperatures as low as 30 millikelvin.
Postponed from June 8-11, 2020, to April 12 - 15, 2021, the 14th edition of the Workshop on Low Temperature Electronics (WOLTE-14) will be held in Matera, a unique historical town on the patronage of a UNESCO world heritage site situated in southern Italy. In an announcement made online, the organization stated that te safety and well-being of all conference participants is their top priority.
Scientists of the Samara National Research University in Samara, Russia, have started to develop a cryogenic engine that will use liquid nitrogen or liquefied natural gas as fuel. Announced in October, the team hopes that the engine will be able to power environmentally friendly vehicles in specially protected natural areas. The team also hopes to improve special-purpose unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) which can remain invisible to infrared tracking devices as they will leave no thermal traces in the sky, according to their developers.
Advances in quantum computing have been in the news due to the potential for extremely large speedups in solution times of some important applications such as decryption (code breaking), optimization or simulation of molecules and materials in which quantum-mechanical effects are important. Large-scale classical (digital) computers operating at cryogenic temperatures have generated less excitement yet are under development as potential control computers for quantum computers and for energy-efficient, high performance computing. Both quantum and digital cryogenic computers would benefit from modified or improved cryogenic refrigeration systems.
Chart Industries, Inc., (CSA CSM) announced on November 2 it had completed the acquisition of the microbulk cryogenic tank intellectual property, equipment, and other assets from IC Biomedical (“ICB”), a private entity. Chart acquired the business from IC Biomedical upon ICB’s acquisition of these assets and the cryobiological assets of Worthington Industries. Additionally, on November 13, the company announced the completed acquisition of the Theodore AL cryogenic trailer and hydrogen trailer (transport) assets of Worthington Industries, Inc. This acquisition includes ownership of the Theodore manufacturing site, all trailer-related intellectual property, manufacturing capabilities, equipment and repair backlog.
Dr. Tengming Shen, staff scientist, Division of Accelerator Technology and Applied Physics at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, has been awarded the Roger W. Boom Award by the Cryogenics Society of America. The award was presented November 4 at the virtual 2020 Applied Superconductivity Conference.
Air Liquide Advanced Technologies (CSA CSM) has acquired 80% capital of the French company Cryoconcept, which specializes in dilution refrigeration technology reaching extremely low temperatures. This transaction enables Air Liquide to strengthen its expertise in the field of ultralow temperature—close to absolute zero—cryogenics, propose a broader offering and accelerate the development of Cryoconcept’s activities. The acquisition was announced on September 24.