Universities offering Cryogenics and Superconductivity education in the United States

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Boston University

boston_university_logoPY743—Low Temperature Physics is listed as “taught on demand.” Students are taught how to handle and use liquid helium in the Advanced Laboratory Course PY581 in connection with several experiments such as the Quantum Hall Effect and an experiment on superconductivity. CAS PY 543 is taught every year and covers superconductivity.

For more information, contact Prof. Larry Sulak.

Columbia University

columbia_logoColumbia does not offer courses in cryogenics or superconductivity, but the undergraduate laboratory course W3081/3082 has two experiments (quantized Hall effect and superconductivity) that require students to transfer nitrogen/helium and make low temperature measurements. The advanced undergraduate condensed matter physics course G4018 covers superconductivity as one of a number of topics, as do graduate courses G6082 and 8083.

For more information, contact Prof. Andrew Millis.

Cornell University

cornell_logoCornell has lots of activity in low-temperature physics, and employs substantial cryogenic machinery in several projects including the accelerator complex at Wilson Lab.

The Laboratory of Atomic and Solid State Physics is a major center for research in the area of condensed matter physics and related areas. It was founded in 1959, and there are currently 30 faculty members of the Department of Physics associated with the Laboratory. LASSP is a research center associated with the Physics Department. All physics research is associated with one of two research labs: LASSP and LEPP.

Research in the Laboratory spans experimental and theoretical studies of many topics, including low-temperature helium physics, liquid physics, and magnetic phenomena and devices.

For more information, visit: http://physics.cornell.edu or contact Craig Wiggers.

Florida State University

florida_State_logoProf. Wei Guo teaches a course that is offered every other year in the Spring semester through the Mechanical Engineering Department of the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. This course is offered to seniors/graduate students. The course teaches properties of materials at low temperatures; classical and quantum fluids; cryogenic heat transfer and fluid dynamics; low temperature refrigeration; instrumentation, and system engineering.

Prerequisites for the cryogenics course include a background in thermodynamics, fluid mechanics and heat transfer, along with a basic understanding of engineering materials. It is also recommended that students have at least one course in modern physics.

Prof. Seungyong Hahn teaches a course entitled “Principles of Magnet Technology,” which covers topics like magnet design and superconductivity. The course is also offered through the mechanical engineering department and is open with permission to upper division undergraduates and graduate students in engineering and the physical sciences. There are no formal prerequisite courses, but a basic knowledge of electromagnetism and properties of materials is highly desirable.

Persons interested in learning more about these courses may email Prof. Wei Guo.

Both classes are cross listed for senior undergraduate students and graduate students. In addition to lectures, the students are expected to perform a design study involving the appropriate technology. The courses also include a tour of the cryogenics and magnet facilities at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory in Tallahassee. The MagLab’s Cryogenics Group conducts R&D to advance the field and supports technology using specialized facilities and equipment. Prof. Wei Guo acts as its program director.
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Georgia Institute of Technology

georgia_tech_logoThe Georgia Tech Cryo Lab is located in Rooms 3-25 and 3-30 of the J. Boggs Building, in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology. The lab’s mission is to perform experiments, develop theoretical models, run simulations via computational fluid dynamics and develop innovative and revolutionary applications for scientific, industrial, military and governmental use.

Research is being done in the following areas: 1. Computational fluid dynamics; 2. Numerical modeling. 3. Low temperature cryocoolers 4. Pulse tube cryocoolers 5. Space applications 6. Tactical cryocoolers 7. Regenerator modeling and experimental characterization 8. Porous assets studies. 9. Two-phase flow and boiling (cryogenic and conventional). 10. Other thermal science and cryogenic topics.

For more information contact S. Mostafa Ghiaasiaan, PhD, PE, or visit http://gtcryolab.gatech.edu/.
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Iowa State University

iowa_state_logoWhile there aren’t any classes per se on cryogenics or superconductivity at Iowa State, superconductivity is taught as part of a special topics course on condensed matter physics and other aspects of experimental solid state physics at the graduate level . A student picks up on cryogenics when he/she carries out their thesis research or works on a special research project involving cryogenic temperatures.

The Phys 590, Special Topics, B. Condensed Matter Physics has no detailed course description except for the wording, “topics of current interest.” The credits are “arranged,” and the prerequisite is “permission of the instructor.”

For more information, contact Prof. Paul Canfield or Dr. Sergey Bud’ko.
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Kansas State University

kansas_state_university_logoThe Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering at Kansas State University does not have a cryogenics program nor do they offer any courses in this subject, but they do have two courses in the general area of thermal systems design where examples of cryogenic systems are examined. Both courses are graduate level.

For more information, contact Dr. Donald L. Fenton, PE.
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LeTourneau University

LeTourneau University logoLeTourneau University offers opportunities to learn about cryogenics in a special topics elective class called “Foundations of Cryogenic Engineering.” This course provides an introduction to industrial and research applications of cryogenics. First there is an introduction to the behavior of materials at cryogenic temperatures—solids, liquids, and gases. A review of the principles of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer at low temperatures is provided. Cryogenic refrigeration cycles are modelled and analyzed. Students are introduced to design principles for maintaining a space below ambient temperatures (insulation, supports, and penetrations) and transport of cryogens, and will learn about basic instrumentation at low temperatures. Practical applications, future developments and safety are emphasized. This class has been offered as both undergraduate and graduate with special additional work required for graduate credit.

In addition, some students participate in projects at the Universal Thermal Energy Laboratory (UTEL at LETU), where research is conducted using a cryostat on loan from the NASA Cryogenics Test Laboratory, and a senior design project to improve the design of a below ambient temperature pipe insulation performance measurement apparatus.

For more information contact Prof. Jonathan A. Demko, P.E., [email protected]
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Louisiana Tech University

louisiana_tech_logoThe following courses are offered in cryogenics, in the Mechanical Engineering Department: (a) MEEN 434. Cryogenic systems (undergraduate) (b) MEEN 557. Special topics (graduate—MS and PhD).

There is also a graduate course in Physics (PHYS 512, Solid State Physics) that deals with materials at cryogenic temperatures, including superconductivity.

The cryogenic courses are offered through the Mechanical Engineering Department.

Cryogenic systems covers: materials at cryogenic temperatures, including superconductivity, liquid properties and safety; gas liquefaction and refrigeration systems; separation and purification of gases at cryogenic temperatures; measurement systems (temperature, flow rate, liquid level, etc.) at cryogenic temperatures; design of dewars and cryogenic fluid transfer lines; vacuum system technology, as it is utilized in cryogenics. Generally, the only prerequisite is a course in thermodynamics.

Much of the research is directed toward micro- and nanosystems involving cryogenics. There is support equipment (N2 liquefier and Collins He liquefier) for the Thermal Sciences Lab.

Additional information can be found on the Louisiana Tech University website, www.latech.edu.
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Michigan State University

michigan_state_university_logoThe College of Engineering and the Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB) at MSU offer undergraduate and graduate classes. Mechanical Design of Cryogenic Systems (ME414) is offered in the fall, and Cryogenic Thermal Systems (ME413) is offered in the spring for undergraduates. Additionally, Cryogenic Process Engineering is offered every other fall semester for graduates, with additional courses being developed. The research focus at MSU is in developing processes and key system component technologies to increase system efficiency and reliability. Students are exposed to both small and large 4.5 Kelvin and 2 Kelvin helium systems. The program is through the MSU Cryogenic Initiative, which is a collaboration between FRIB and the College of Engineering. The goal is to provide a rigorous academic and applied research program. There are also research programs in superconducting magnet and superconducting radio frequency technology through the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

For more information, visit frib.msu.edu/cryoinitiative or contact Senior Cryogenic Process Engineer Peter Knudsen.
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North Carolina State University

north_carolina_state_university_logoThe Department of Materials Science and Engineering has four faculty involved in superconductivity research. There is no formal coursework, though superconductivity is part of courses on electronic materials and magnetic materials.

Research is focused on studies of the discovery of new superconductors, synthesis/processing-microstructure properties of oxides superconductors, optical fiber quench detection, and on performance limiting mechanisms and failure mechanisms. Researchers study bulk materials, wires/tapes and magnets and interact heavily with the applied superconductivity industry.

For more information, visit www.mse.ncsu.edu/ or contact Dr. Justin Schwartz.
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Ohio State University

ohio_state_logoOSU does not offer a course in cryogenic engineering. The Physics Department offers a course on superconductivity. A course focusing on superconducting materials and their properties, offered by MSE, was recently offered for the Winter and Spring quarters for the first time.

For more information, contact Prof. Michael D. Sumption.
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Tufts University

tufts_logoA graduate-level class on cryogenic and superconductivity is taught by Dr. Luisa Chiesa at Tufts University. It is typically offered in the Mechanical Engineering department every other year. The class covers cryogenic systems, liquid production, superconductivity and its applications.

The prerequisites are undergraduate level physics and thermodynamics.

Chiesa’s current research focuses on electromechanical characterization of superconductors for magnet applications. The research is performed at Tufts where the equipment necessary for those experiments is designed and built. Both graduate and undergraduate students are involved.

For more information, visit https://engineering.tufts.edu/people/faculty/luisa-chiesa or contact Dr. Luisa Chiesa.
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University at Buffalo

university_at_buffalo_logoWhile programs are offered at the PhD level that use cryogenic techniques, these are not the focus of research. Research is in spintronics, superconductivity, phase transitions, magnetic materials, semiconductors, quantum fluids, metal insulator transitions. There are no prerequisites as such—just completion of graduate courses and passing the qualifying examination.

There is a dedicated helium liquefier and large liquid nitrogen storage tank plus all the dedicated instrumentation to explore the above-mentioned topics.

For more information, contact Frank M. Gasparini or visit www.physics.buffalo.edu.
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University of California–Los Angeles

ucla_logoCH111 and CH211 are undergraduate and graduate courses offered through the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department in Fall of each year.

Topics covered include applications; safety; material properties; cryogen properties; heat transfer; thermodynamics; gas liquefaction; gas separation; cryocoolers; cryogenic instrumentation; cryogenic equipment; cryogenic insulation; vacuum technology; superfluidity and superconductivity.

Prerequisites include knowledge of heat transfer, thermodynamics and fluid dynamics.

More information is available at: https://courseweb.seas.ucla.edu/classView.php?term=11F&srs=369366200.

UCLA Extension is also offering a Fundamentals of Cryogenics Short Course taught by Dr. Sidney Yuan, Senior Engineering Specialist at The Aerospace Corporation and CSA board member. This course covers the fundamentals of cryogenics with overviews of cryogenics material and cryogens, heat transfer and thermodynamics at low temperatures. Students explore cryogenics applications in cryopreservation, medical fields, transportation, energy-related fields, aerospace/military and material processes.

Topics include the following: gas separation and liquefaction, solid state and fluid type cryocoolers, instrumentation and the design of cryogenic equipment plus superfluidity and superconductivity.

For more information, call the Short Courses Program Office at (310) 825-3344, or visit uclaextension.edu/shortcoursesBR.
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University of Maryland

university_of_maryland_logoWhile no related courses are offered in the Mechanical Engineering department, research using cryogenics is done at University of Maryland. For information on one of the projects that deals with cryogenic fluid mixing, visit http://www.enme.umd.edu/combustion/.
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University of New Mexico

university_of_new_mexico_logoME 421/521 is offered at the University of New Mexico. This course builds on basic knowledge of thermodynamics, heat transfer and fluid mechanics and provides a comprehensive introduction to thermal systems design and optimization based on the second law of thermodynamics. It also includes optimization of thermal systems under constraints of finite size and finite time processes. Examples from different areas of thermal science and engineering such as heat exchangers, heat transfer enhancement, energy storage, thermal insulation, cryogenics, micro-electronic cooling, power, refrigeration and direct energy conversion systems are covered in the course. The course includes an introduction to thermoeconomic analysis and optimization.

For more information, contact Prof. Arsalan Razani, http://www.me.unm.edu/~razani/.
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University of Wisconsin–Madison

wisconsin_logoUW-Madison offers one course specifically on cryogenics, taught at the level of a first-year graduate student or senior-level undergraduate. It is also possible to take the course through the UW-Madison Extension program in the Department of Engineering Professional Development. In past years a course on superconductivity has also been offered, but with the departure of the Applied Superconductivity Center in 2006, there has not been sufficient interest in the course to offer it again. An additional course is offered on Vacuum Technology (ME 601), also at the first year grad student, senior undergrad level. It is somewhat related to the field of cryogenics, although only peripherally. The cryogenics course is cross listed in two departments: in Mechanical Engineering as M E 566, and in Nuclear Engineering as N E 566.

The cryogenics course covers the following sequence of topics: history; cryogen properties; refrigeration–large scale and cryocoolers; instrumentation; system design including material properties as well as vessel and transfer line design; safety. Prerequisites include undergraduate courses on thermodynamics and heat transfer.

The detailed course description can be accessed at: https://public.my.wisc.edu/web/expanded.

The University of Wisconsin–Madison has a large research program in cryogenics under the direction of three professors, Franklin Miller, Greg Nellis and John Pfotenhauer. The topics are varied, but include cryocooler development (JT, pulse tube, hybrid), material properties, heat transfer mechanisms, sub-kelvin coolers and cryopumps.
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Washington State University

washington_state_logoThe HYdrogen Properties for Energy Research (HYPER) laboratory at Washington State University (WSU) is dedicated to advancing the Technology Readiness Level of cryogenic hydrogen systems. The HYPER lab has extensive relationships with the Pacific Northwest’s leading Aerospace and Clean Energy sectors. Cryogenic hydrogen properties research transcends disciplines and energy scales from quantum spin flips, to liquid hydrogen fuel for commerce and aerospace, to fusion energy and antimatter storage. Graduate level classes in Thermodynamics and Heat Transfer at WSU utilize textbooks with extensive cryogenic problems and examples including many hands-on demonstrations. Much more information is available at https://hydrogen.wsu.edu. Or contact Dr. Jacob Leachman.