Single crystals of REBa2Cu3O7-δ(RE=natural mixture of Y and heavy lanthanides in the single crystals) superconductor were successfully grown using rare-earth oxides extracted from xenotime mineral, allowing an alternative and simple route for superconductor single-crystal production. The methodology to extract the rare-earth mixed oxides from the xenotime mineral has three main steps: alkaline fusion, acid lixiviation and oxalic precipitation. Large single crystals with a typical 5×5×0.03 mm3size were obtained by using a CuO-BaO self-flux and were characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy-dispersive electron spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, magnetic measurements and nanoindentation. The composition of the rare-earth elements of the crystal was different from the starting mixture, possibly due to the different solubilities of the elements in the melt. The final crystal stoichiometry was RE:Ba:Cu=1:2:3. X-ray diffraction analysis showed highly oriented c-axis (c=11.716±0.002 Å). The critical temperature was determined to be around TC≅88-89 K after the crystals have been submitted to oxygen annealing. Hardness and elastic modulus for ab- and b(a)c-planes were 8.5±0.5 and 160±20 GPa, respectively. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research
Choose a citation style from the tabs below