American Superconductor Corporation (NASDAQ: AMSC), a leading energy technologies company, announced today that it has manufactured and shipped approximately 17,000 meters (56,000 feet) of its proprietary second generation (2G) high temperature superconductor (HTS) wire, branded as 344 superconductors, from the company's manufacturing facility in Devens, MA for use in Project HYDRA. This is the single largest shipment of 2G HTS wire by any company worldwide.
Led by soaring energy and steel prices, the Denali Intelligence T&D Market Index once again showed strong movement, with a 5.1% increase for the 2nd quarter of 2008. Steel is up on all classes, ranging from 23% to 36% on varying grades. This spike in prices translated to a 12% increase in steel structures, with additional increases expected in near term months as base material costs impact the production line. This lag effect can be seen even more distinctly in the wire and cable segment, which posted a nominal change of 0.4% for the quarter but is expected to jump significantly in the near term of Q3. The energy effect was also in play, with diesel fuel up an additional 20% in Q2, 40% on the year. Fuel was the primary mover on the services side of the index, as labor rates remained stable. The overall unemployment rate remained at 5.5% during the month of June, up from 4.6% a year ago, with an expectation of additional increases in the remainder of 2008.