Precise absolute Seebeck coefficient measurement and uncertainty analysis using high- T c superconductors as a reference

Y. Amagai, T. Shimazaki, K. Okawa, T. Kawae, H. Fujiki, N. H. Kaneko

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2 Citations (Scopus)


The intrinsic properties of superconductors enable the direct determination of the absolute Seebeck coefficient at low temperature due to the disappearance of the Seebeck effect to obey the Meissner effect. We report a precision absolute Seebeck coefficient measurement for the fine Pt sample determined using the high-Tc YBa2Cu3O7-x (YBCO) superconductor as a reference and an analysis of the measurement uncertainty. To make a precision measurement and aid in the verification of the uncertainty components, we developed a cryostat system that enables temperature control in a stable manner. The expected performance of the reference superconductor yielded a zero value well below Tc, which was validated by a superconductor-superconductor thermocouple experiment. Uncertainty analysis shows that the main limiting factor for this measurement is the accuracy of the temperature difference measurement using the resistance temperature sensors, along with its analog noise. We obtained values of S = 5.6 ± 0.2 μV/K with a relative expanded uncertainty of 3% at 80 K and precisely compared the Pt value with that determined by the high-Tc Bi2Sr2Ca2Cu3O8+δ (Bi-2223) superconductor, which has a higher Tc. We found that there was no difference between the Seebeck coefficient values obtained from the YBCO and Bi-2223 references up to its Tc within the expanded measurement uncertainties of 0.3 μV/K (2σ). These results provide accurate validation that the high-Tc superconductor is a useful reference up to the liquid nitrogen temperature.

Original languageEnglish
Article number014903
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation


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