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MEISSNER, W. & OCHSENFELD, R. - [THE DISCOVERY OF THE MEISSNER EFFECT]

Ein neuer Effekt bei Eintritt der Supraleitfältigkeit.

lyn46974

Berlin, Julius Springer, 1933. Royal8vo. Bound in contemporary half calf with gilt lettering to spine. In "Die Naturwissenschaften", Vol. 21, 1933. A library stamp to title page, otherwise a very fine and clean. Pp. 787-788. ¶ First printing of the influential Meissner effect which lead to the discovery of the phenomenological theory of superconductivity by Fritz and Heinz London in 1935; The Meissner effect is an expulsion of a magnetic field from a superconductor during its transition to the superconducting state and it allowed the first theoretical predictions for superconductivity to be made

"In the spring of 1933, in the course of these measurements Meissner and his colleague Robert Ochsenfeld observed a new phenomenon that contributed greatly to the understanding of superconductivity. The magnitude of the magnetic field measured between conductors was a function of the direction of the current, which could be explained by the role played by the earth's magnetic field. Therefore, Meissner and Ochsenfeld carried out the measurements of changes in the magnetic field close to the conductors when these were subject only to the earth's field, that is, without any current running through them. Before superconductivity set in, the magnetic lines of force penetrated the crystals with almost no resistance because of their low susceptibility. From what was known about superconductivity at that time, it was expected that the distribution of the lines of force would remain unchanged if the temperature were lowered below the threshold level. However, Meissner and Ochsenfeld observed an increase in the lines of force in close proximity to the superconductors. Meissner interpreted this result as follows: the magnetic field flux was displaced from the crystals when superconductivity set in the magnetic field flux that previously flowed inside the conductors was now flowing between the crystals." (DSB)

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