Superconducting steel

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Superconducting steel is a concept in materials science, referring to the idea of a steel alloy that would behave as a superconductor. The term has appeared primarily in discussions of designs of imagined devices involving nuclear fusion[1] or processes with still higher densities of power.

New York Times use[edit]

In reporting results of geological surveys in Afghanistan in June 2010 in its on-line edition, the Times described niobium -- whose actual major economic uses include structural steel, non-ferrous alloys, and non-ferrous superconducting magnets -- as "a soft metal used in producing superconducting steel",[2] and was widely quoted, often including the phrase "superconducting steel".[3]

Two Times readers publicly contested this information, respectively labeling it as "wildly wrong"[4] and saying "There is no such thing as 'superconducting steel.' "[5] As of October 2010, no correction to the article has been appended by the Times.


  1. ^ E.g. "Bussard Ramjets" in The Bussard Ramjet - an Interstellar Drive? at BBC - h2g2 - A Forum Conversation
  2. ^ "U.S. Identifies Vast Mineral Riches in Afghanistan", by James Risen, New York Times, June 13, 2010
  3. ^ E.g. "Biz Brief: Afghanistan Harbors $1 Trillion in Mineral Wealth" at AOL DailyFinance, "U.S.: Afghanistan Sitting On $1T in Minerals" at CBS, and "U.S. Discovers $1T in Afghan Mineral Deposits" at FoxNews.Com
  4. ^ Untitled, by materials scientist, NYT "Asia Pacific", "Readers' Comments", June 14th, 2010, 2:18 pm
  5. ^ Untitled, by Fred Gamble, NYT "Asia Pacific", "Readers' Comments", June 14th, 2010, 2:32 pm