A radio frequency-assisted fast superconducting switch is described. A superconductor is closely coupled to a radio frequency (RF) coil. To turn the switch "off," i.e., to induce a transition to the normal, resistive state in the superconductor, a voltage burst is applied to the RF coil. This voltage burst is sufficient to induce a current in the coupled superconductor. The combination of the induced current with any other direct current flowing through the superconductor is sufficient to exceed the critical current of the superconductor at the operating temperature, inducing a transition to the normal, resistive state. A by-pass MOSFET may be configured in parallel with the superconductor to act as a current shunt, allowing the voltage across the superconductor to drop below a certain value, at which time the superconductor undergoes a transition to the superconducting state and the switch is reset.
STATEMENT OF GOVERNMENT RIGHTS
 This invention was made with Government support under contract number DE-AC02-98CH10886, awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.