Topological Hall effect at above room temperature in heterostructures composed of a magnetic insulator and a heavy metal
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1038/s41928-019-0246-x
Non-volatile memory and computing technology rely on efficient read and write of ultra-tiny information carriers that do not wear out. Magnetic skyrmions are emerging as a potential carrier since they are topologically robust nanoscale spin textures that can be manipulated with ultralow current density. To date, most of skyrmions are reported in metallic films, which suffer from additional Ohmic loss and thus high energy dissipation. Therefore, skyrmions in magnetic insulators are of technological importance for low-power information processing applications due to their low damping and the absence of Ohmic loss. Moreover, they attract fundamental interest in studying various magnon-skyrmion interactions11. Skyrmions have been observed in one insulating material Cu2OSeO3 at cryogenic temperatures, where they are stabilized by bulk Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction. Here, we report the observation of magnetic skyrmions that survive above room temperature in magnetic insulator/heavy metal heterostructures, i.e., thulium iron garnet/platinum. The presence of these skyrmions results from the Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction at the interface and is identified by the emergent topological Hall effect. Through tuning the magnetic anisotropy via varying temperature, we observe skyrmions in a large window of external magnetic field and enhanced stability of skyrmions in the easy-plane anisotropy regime. Our results will help create a new platform for insulating skyrmion-based room temperature low dissipation spintronic applications.