Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Hysteresis in transport critical-current measurements of oxide superconductors



Loren F. Goodrich, Theodore C. Stauffer


We investigated magnetic hysteresis in transport critical-current (Ic) measurement of Ag-matrix (Bi,Pb)2Sr2Ca2Cu3O^10-x^ *Bi-2223) and AgMg-matrix Bi2Sr2CaCu2O8+X (Bi-2212) tapes. The effect of magnetic hysteresis on the measured critical current of high temperature superconductors is a very important consideration for every measurement procedure that involves more than one sweep of magnetic field, changes in field angle, or changes in temperature at a given field. The existence of this hysteresis is well known; however, the implications for a measurement standard or interlaboratory comparisons are often ignored and the measurements are often made in the most expedient way. A key finding is that Idc^ at a given angle, determined by sweeping the angles in a given magnetic field , can be 17 % different for the Ic determined after the angle was fixed in zero field and the magnet then ramped to the given field. Which value is correct is addressed in the context that the proper sequence of measurement conditions reflects the application conditions. The hysteresis in angle-sweep and temperature-sweep data is related to the hysteresis observed when the field is swept up and down at constant angle and temperature. The necessity of heating a specimen to near its transition temperature to reset it to an initial state between measurements at different angles and temperatures is discussed.
Journal of Research (NIST JRES) -


critical current, high temperature superconductors, interlaboratory comparison, magnetic field angle, magnetic hysteresis, standard method, variable temperature


Goodrich, L. and Stauffer, T. (2001), Hysteresis in transport critical-current measurements of oxide superconductors, Journal of Research (NIST JRES), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed June 23, 2024)


If you have any questions about this publication or are having problems accessing it, please contact

Created May 30, 2001, Updated October 12, 2021