A persistent current switch (PCS) is used for various superconducting applications, such as superconducting magnetic energy storage (SMES) system. The authors have proposed a mechanical switch of Y-Ba-Cu-O (YBCO) bulk as a PCS. In previous study, in order to investigate the contact characteristics of the switch, 50 A current test was performed and the contact resistance between two contacts was measured by four terminal method. As a result, it became clear that polishing and metal depositing on YBCO surface was effective to reduce the residual resistance, and the authors achieved to reduce this resistance to 0.27 μΩ, which was less than our target value of 1 μΩ. At the same time, the greater current test (above 50 A) was performed in order to examine the transition to normal conductive state in the YBCO contacts. As a result, it could be found that the current value when a local quench occurred (local quenching current: LQC) had a strong relationship with the layer thickness of deposited silver on YBCO surface. This paper focused on the relationship between the transition current to the normal conductive state in the YBCO (quenching current) and the layer thickness of deposited silver on YBCO surface. And it was also observed whether the number of current cycles affected the value of quenching current. © 2008.
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