High-temperature superconductors (HTS) have high potential for various engineering applications such as a superconducting flywheel energy storage system. The attractive feature of the superconducting magnetic bearings in the energy storage system is a reduction in the rotational loss. In this study, we studied the feasibility of a superconducting magnet to support bulk superconductors in magnetic bearings with the aim of increasing the stored energy. The superconducting magnet has a room temperature bore of 100 mm with the maximum magnetic field of 3.5 T. In addition, we used a GM freezer (10 K in the lowest attainment temperature), which can control the temperature of the bulk superconductors. The used bulk samples were Y-Ba-Cu-O and Sm-Ba-Cu-O 46 mm in diameter and 15 mm in thickness fabricated with a top-seeded melt-growth process. We have studied the effects of the temperature and magnetic field on the levitation force and its time relaxation. The levitation forces were measured by applying the magnetic fields of 0-2 T at 10-77.3 K. It was found that the levitation force increased with lowering temperature in both samples. The time relaxation of the levitation force was also reduced with lowering temperature. Sm-Ba-Cu-O exhibited better performance in the levitation force and its time relaxation in a high temperature and high-field region.
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