A method and apparatus for providing cryogenic cooling to HTS devices, in particular those that are used in high-voltage electric power applications. The method involves pressurizing liquid cryogen to above one atmospheric pressure to improve its dielectric strength, while sub-cooling the liquid cryogen to below its saturation temperature in order to improve the performance of the HTS components of the device. An apparatus utilizing such a cooling method consists of a vessel that contains a pressurized gaseous cryogen region and a sub-cooled liquid cryogen bath, a liquid cryogen heating coupled with a gaseous cryogen venting scheme to maintain the pressure of the cryogen to a value in a range that corresponds to optimum dielectric strength of the liquid cryogen, and a cooling system that maintains the liquid cryogen at a temperature below its boiling point to improve the performance of HTS materials used in the device.
The U.S. Government has a paid-up license in this invention and the right in limited circumstances to require the patent owner to license others on reasonable terms as provided for by the terms of Contract No. DE-FC36-03G013033 awarded by the Department of Energy.