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Refrigeration of separate, user-supplied payloads with Normal-Insulator-Superconductor tunnel junctions



Peter J. Lowell, Galen C. O'Neil, Jason M. Underwood, Joel N. Ullom


Normal metal - Insulator - Superconductor (NIS) tunnel junctions can be used to selectively remove the hottest elec- trons in the normal metal, thereby causing it to cool. NIS tunnel junctions have already been used to cool lithograph- ically integrated payloads [1], but this requires integration of two fabrication processes. To increase the flexibility of NIS refrigerators, we have designed a stage cooler based on NIS tunnel junctions that will be able to cool arbitrary, user-supplied payloads from 300 mK to 100 mK. This stage cooler can be backed by a Helium-3 refrigerator to pro- vide a lightweight and simple means of reaching 100 mK in space applications. In this paper, we describe the design of our stage cooler and present calculations of the cooling power and time required to reach 100 mK.


Lowell, P. , O'Neil, G. , Underwood, J. and Ullom, J. (2012), Refrigeration of separate, user-supplied payloads with Normal-Insulator-Superconductor tunnel junctions, Cryogenics, [online], (Accessed July 20, 2024)


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Created January 24, 2012, Updated November 10, 2018