A fault current limiter (FCL) may be manufactured at competitive qualities and prices by using rectangular-shaped YBCO films which are prepared by metal-organic deposition (MOD) method, because the MOD method can produce large size elements with a low-cost and non-vacuum technique. Prior to constructing a superconducting FCL (SFCL), AC over-current carrying experiments were conducted for 120 mm long elements where YBCO thin film of about 200 nm in thickness was coated on sapphire substrate with cerium oxide (CeO2) interlayer. In the experiments, only single cycle of the ac damping current of 50 Hz was applied to the pure YBCO element without protective metal coating or parallel resistor and the magnitude of the current was increased step by step until the breakdown phenomena occurred in the element. In each experiment, current waveforms flowing through the YBCO element and voltage waveform across the element were measured to get the voltage-current characteristics. The allowable over-current and generated voltage were successfully estimated for the pure YBCO films. It can be pointed out that the lower n-value trends to bring about the higher allowable over-current and the higher withstand voltage more than tens of volts. The YBCO film having higher n-value is sensitive to the over-current. Thus, some protective methods such as a metal coating should be employed for applying to the fault current limiter.
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