It is my great pleasure to announce that the commemorative 30th International Symposium on Superconductivity (ISS2017) will be held this year, organized by the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST). The ISS has been held annually since the first Symposium, which was held in 1988 after the discovery of copper-oxide-based high-temperature superconductors.

At present, superconducting technologies are already used in a variety of fields. The most popular application is MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) devices that are installed in almost all major hospitals. Superconducting magnets for generating high magnetic fields are also used in NMR (Nuclear Magnetic Resonance) machines and maglev trains. SQUID (Superconducting QUantum Interference Device) systems that can measure ultra-low magnetic fields are applied to medical devices (magnetoencephaloraphy and magnetocardiography) and to exploration of underground natural resources. The discovery of oxide-based high-temperature superconductors (HTS) and metal-based MgB2 superconductors has widely expanded the possibility of applications. To answer the urgent societal need for energy saving, HTS power transmission cables are to be introduced in railway feeder cables. Demonstration of a low-cost, light-weight superconducting wind turbine generator is scheduled to be done in several years.

Last year AIST inaugurated a research consortium on superconductivity: the Applied Superconductivity Constellations of Tsukuba (ASCOT). ASCOT, composed of 21 private organizations and 8 national universities/institutes (including AIST), aims to develop superconducting technologies into practical products and systems used in our society, and to foster young researchers who may contribute to the future of this technology. In this context, ASCOT greatly supports ISS2017.

I sincerely hope that this commemorative symposium will gather many scientists, engineers, academic students, corporate executives and other participants from all over the world, and will facilitate fruitful discussions to promote superconductivity technologies.

April 20, 2017

Toshihiko Kanayama, AIST Fellow
General Chair, ISS2017