American Superconductor Demonstrate World Record Level Production Rates for 344 Superconductors

American Superconductor Corporation, a leading energy technologies company, announced today at the U.S. Department of Energy's 2007 Wire Development Workshop in Panama City, Florida, that it has demonstrated world-record-level production rates for 344 superconductors that have commercial-grade electrical performance. The company said the demonstrated production rates exceed the levels required to meet commercial cost targets and that this is a critical step in the process of qualifying its proprietary manufacturing process for 344 superconductors. AMSC also reports it is on track for initial volume production of commercial-grade product in December 2007, as planned.

AMSC's 344 superconductors conduct over 150 times the electricity of copper wires of the same dimensions with 100% efficiency when cooled with environmentally friendly liquid nitrogen.

"Although we have previously achieved commercial-grade electrical performance, that alone is not sufficient to meet market needs; we need to be able to produce high-performance wire day-to-day at costs that allow us to offer attractive prices and achieve attractive margins," said Angelo Santamaria, vice president and general manager of the AMSC Wires business unit. "We now have a clear pathway to produce HTS wire with price-performance ratios equivalent to copper."

Santamaria noted that AMSC already shipped 6,800 meters of 344 superconductors to customers and was on track to ship an additional 3,200 meters of this wire by the end of March 2007. The wire is being utilized by 33 customers in 11 countries around the world to design HTS products such as power cables, generators and grid-level surge protectors called fault current limiters. "Progress toward making and operating demonstration devices made with 344 superconductors has been excellent," said Santamaria. "We expect results for some of these devices to be achieved and reported over the next several months."

About AMSC's 344 Superconductors

AMSC's 344 superconductors, which have the architecture of what are generically known as second generation (2G) high temperature superconductor (HTS) wires, are designed as a drop-in replacement for customers who are currently using first generation (1G) HTS wire. The 344 superconductors comprise the basic 2G HTS wire architecture clad with ultra-thin strips of copper or stainless steel. 344 superconductors offer significantly higher power density and efficiency compared with similar copper-based wire products. As a result, electrical systems that incorporate HTS wire are dramatically smaller, lighter and more cost effective than comparable systems based on copper wire. Applications for HTS wire include power transmission and distribution cables, propulsion motors and generators, degaussing cable systems, synchronous condensers and fault current limiters.

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