The author summarizes processing of bulk YBa2Cu 3Ox superconductors with an emphasis placed on the relationship between microstructure and critical currents. Sintering is commonly used in ceramic processing but has been unsuccessful in producing high-J c materials, primarily due to the weak links at grain boundaries. Melt processes have been found to be effective in increasing Jc values through a combination of grain alignment and the introduction of pinning centres. Some possible applications of melt processed superconductors in bulk form are also introduced in this review. Although many attempts have been made to fabricate long conductors, Jc values are still very small for long conductors, while the length is limited for high-Jc materials.
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