Artificial pinning centers (APCs) of varying types and nano-scale size have been successfully introduced into (Y,RE)Ba2Cu3O7-x (Y,RE-BCO, (Y,RE)BaCuO, YBaCuO or YBCO) thin film superconductors by different processing methods in order to strongly and collectively pin quantized vortices. As a result, the critical current densities (Jcs) of these high-temperature-superconductor (HTS) films have been dramatically improved for a wide range of temperatures (T = 4.2K to ~ 85K) and applied magnetic fields (Happl = 0T to 32T). A number of high quality reviews of this large field have been published that describe progress in the fundamental sciences and pseudo-empirical approaches to improving Jc(H,T) and flux pinning properties. Herein a review is provided that focuses on two specific subtopics: i) plotting historical progress world-wide since 1995 increasing Jc(H,T,Ɵ) properties, by data-mining the ~ 87 highest cited papers in the field, and ii) presenting how improvements of Jc(H,T,Ɵ) can have significant impact to improve the performance and capabilities of high power devices and applications. The review plots Jc(H//c,T) values achieved at T = 40K to 77K, and Happl = 0T to 9T, summaries of Jc(H//c,H//ab,min) @65K and 1-3T, and the highest angular Jc(65K, H=1-3T, θ = 0 to 90°). It was found that increases of Jc(H//c,T=40-77K) of 7x to 50x are consistently being achieved by multiple processing methods and nanoparticle additions for the full range of Happl = 0T to 9T. Due to these large increases, it is shown that improving flux pinning at operation temperatures T = 40K to 77K and Happl = 0T to 32T can better enable devices to operate at dramatically increasing higher temperatures, which can significantly reduce system cost-size-weight-and-power (C-SWaP). Reducing C-SWaP can enable operation or completely new capabilities or markets in technology areas such as air or space propulsion.
Keywords: yttrium barium copper oxide, flux pinning, thin films, current density