This Day in History – Superconductivity

On this day in 1911 Heike Kamerlingh Onnes dipped a wire made of solid mercury into liquid helium and lowered the temperature. At 4.2 K, the wire’s electrical resistance suddenly vanished.

Onnes wrote in his lab book: “Mercury has passed into a new state, which on account of its extraordinary electrical properties may be called the superconductive state.” He had discovered superconductivity! Via Physics Today.

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