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Books on superconductivity

  1. Jan 25, 2013 #1
    Hi all,

    Can someone recommend a good book on how to learn about superconductors, a general overview of the field? Is there any book in the field of superconductivity ananlogous to the big book of gravitation in general relativity? If you know of more than one good intro to superconductivity, that would be great. The level would be about somewhere that assumes the reader has a BS in physics.

    Thanks a bunch if you can help.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 26, 2013 #2


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    There are a few books, but the book "everyone" uses is the book by Tinkham.
    The only problem with it is that it is not very up-to-date, and the chapters on high-temperature superconductivity are a bit outdated.

    Also, I should warn you that even though the theories of superconductivity (BCS theory, Landau-Ginzburg etc ) are relatively simple compared to many other topics in condensed matter, it is still not exactly easy and you will struggle with the theory unless you've done a couple of courses in quantum mechanics and statistical physics.
  4. Jan 26, 2013 #3


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    Tinkham is a very good book, but centered rather on experimental topics. It treats BCS theory, but that's it. I does not treat how infinite conductivity comes about which is maybe the first question people ask about SC. Nothing about broken gauge symmetry, ODLRO, renormalisation of the electron electron interaction or calculational methods.
    On the other hand very detailed treatments of all possible kinds of Josephson effects.

    Certainly a classic centered on theory is the book by Schrieffer, Superconductivity, but very old.
    I fear there is no up to date text book available.
  5. Jan 27, 2013 #4
    Wow, I wonder why no one is writing them.

    Also, just to make sure: if anyone knows of a particularly good superconductor book, not necessarily famous or universal in the field, that would work also. There must've been a textbook or two since 1996 Tinkham (I searched about it) someone used in a class.
  6. Jan 27, 2013 #5
    I think that the book by Fossheim and Sudbø from 2004 (Superconductivity: Physics and Applications) might be the answer. It's newer than Tinkham, and should be accessible for people with a BS background (and a knowledge of second quantization), while also including newer developments.
  7. Jan 28, 2013 #6


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  8. Jan 29, 2013 #7
    Nice link!

    There is indeed a clear resemblance to Tinkham (something the authors are quite open about in the preface). I also think they do a decent job at explaining the origin of superconductivity, while keeping it a reasonable level; i.e. useful as an introduction. What kind of questions would you find interesting?
  9. Jan 30, 2013 #8


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    For the questions I am interested in, see my post #3.
    However, I didn't want to say that the book is not interesting. But it is very much centered on experiments, as Tinkham.
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