updated 2/16/2011 6:46:55 AM ET 2011-02-16T11:46:55

SANTA BARBARA, Calif., Feb. 16, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Superconductor Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq:SCON) ("STI"), a world leader in the development and production of high temperature superconducting (HTS) materials and associated technologies, gained an important customer acceptance for a second generation (2G) HTS wire sample. STI's wire sample met this customer's requirements for current carrying performance at the desired temperature and magnetic field strengths necessary for superconducting 2G HTS wire applications for large rotating machines.

Adam Shelton, STI's Vice President, Product Management and Marketing, said, "This customer validation is a significant milestone towards our goal of obtaining market acceptance for our 2G HTS wire. Our efforts remain focused on large, emerging addressable markets including superconducting rotating machines, which are enabled by the availability of high-performance, economical 2G HTS wire. Our HTS materials development team worked extremely hard over the past year to meet this customer's challenging wire specifications. Demonstrating our superior current carrying performance in high magnetic field is an important achievement on STI's road to commercial success with 2G HTS wire."

"STI and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) Reactive Co-Evaporation (RCE) technology is both technologically innovative and potentially commercially enabling for new HTS machines," stated a potential 2G HTS wire customer for superconducting machines applications. "STI has shown superior current carrying performance at 65 Kelvin (K) and high magnetic fields, utilizing its newly developed HTS [wire] manufacturing processes. The progress LANL and STI have shown to date suggest even further improvements in the future."

STI's strategic 2G HTS wire program utilizes its specialized HTS material deposition processes and volume manufacturing expertise to produce energy efficient, cost-effective, and high performance HTS wire for next generation power applications and other attractive new markets. STI believes that large superconducting rotating machine applications, such as 5+ megawatt (MW) wind turbines, represent a huge market opportunity for 2G HTS wire. 

The size and weight of the generator are the current limiting factors in efforts to increase the amount of output power generated by each wind turbine. Turbine manufacturers believe that building a generator utilizing 2G HTS wire will reduce its size and weight sufficiently to enable the development of 10 MW and larger wind turbines. In fact, many believe that the benefit of utilizing superconducting wire starts at wind turbines with 5MW of output power. According to Emerging Energy Research (EER), large wind turbines (5MW+) deployed in 2016 are expected to deliver 2,731 MW of worldwide offshore capacity at an annual cost of over $5 billion. EER expects an annual offshore production increase of 5,377 MW in 2020 at a cost in excess of $10 billion.

About Superconductor Technologies Inc. (STI)

Superconductor Technologies Inc., headquartered in Santa Barbara, CA, has been a world leader in HTS materials since 1987, developing more than 100 patents as well as proprietary trade secrets and manufacturing expertise. For more than a decade, STI has been providing innovative interference elimination and network enhancement solutions to the commercial wireless industry. The company is currently leveraging its key enabling technologies, including RF filtering, HTS materials and cryogenics to develop energy efficient, cost-effective and high performance second generation (2G) HTS wire for existing and emerging power applications, to develop applications for advanced RF wireless solutions and innovative adaptive filtering, and for government R&D.  Superconductor Technologies Inc.'s common stock is listed on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the ticker symbol "SCON." For more information about STI, please visit http://www.suptech.com.

The Superconductor Technologies Inc. logo is available at http://www.globenewswire.com/newsroom/prs/?pkgid=3963

Safe HarborStatement 

"Safe Harbor" statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding our business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties, including without limitation, the risk that this offering will not close. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are inherently subject to uncertainties and other factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements. These factors and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: our limited cash and a history of losses; the limited number of potential customers; the limited number of suppliers for some of our components; there being no significant backlog from quarter to quarter; our market being characterized by rapidly advancing technology; fluctuations in product demand from quarter to quarter; the impact of competitive filter products, technologies and pricing; manufacturing capacity constraints and difficulties; and local, regional, and national and international economic conditions and events and the impact they may have on us and our customers, such as the current worldwide recession.

Forward-looking statements can be affected by many other factors, including, those described in the "Business" and "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations" sections of STI's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009 and in STI's other public filings. These documents are available online at STI's website, www.suptech.com, or through the SEC's website, www.sec.gov. Forward-looking statements are based on information presently available to senior management, and STI has not assumed any duty to update any forward-looking statements.

Contact

For further information please contact Investor Relations, invest@suptech.com, Cathy Mattison or Mary Magnani of Lippert / Heilshorn & Associates, +1-415-433-3777, for Superconductor Technologies Inc.

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