Alexander Gurevich (Old Dominion University)
Since its discovery 100 years ago, superconductivity has captured the imagination of many as a fascinating physical phenomenon which would enable the drastic reduction of energy waste in the electric power grid, high field magnets and large accelerators. Understanding the physics of superconductivity has been advancing along with the discovery of many superconducting materials and tuning their properties. In this talk I will give a brief overview of how the physics of unconventional superconductivity turned out to be intertwined with materials properties, with the emphasis on high-T_c cuprates and the recently discovered Fe-based superconductors. One of the lessons of the last 20 years is that high critical temperatures and upper critical magnetic fields of unconventional superconductors are no longer the main parameters of merit for power applications, which can also be important for the ongoing quest for higher-T_c materials.