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Realization of ground-state artificial skyrmion lattices at room temperature

  • Author(s): Gilbert, DA
  • Maranville, BB
  • Balk, AL
  • Kirby, BJ
  • Fischer, P
  • Pierce, DT
  • Unguris, J
  • Borchers, JA
  • Liu, K
  • et al.
Abstract

© 2015 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved. The topological nature of magnetic skyrmions leads to extraordinary properties that provide new insights into fundamental problems of magnetism and exciting potentials for novel magnetic technologies. Prerequisite are systems exhibiting skyrmion lattices at ambient conditions, which have been elusive so far. Here, we demonstrate the realization of artificial Bloch skyrmion lattices over extended areas in their ground state at room temperature by patterning asymmetric magnetic nanodots with controlled circularity on an underlayer with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA). Polarity is controlled by a tailored magnetic field sequence and demonstrated in magnetometry measurements. The vortex structure is imprinted from the dots into the interfacial region of the underlayer via suppression of the PMA by a critical ion-irradiation step. The imprinted skyrmion lattices are identified directly with polarized neutron reflectometry and confirmed by magnetoresistance measurements. Our results demonstrate an exciting platform to explore room-temperature ground-state skyrmion lattices.

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