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DOI: 10.5445/IR/1000081400

Stabilizing spin spirals and isolated skyrmions at low magnetic field exploiting vanishing magnetic anisotropy

Hervé, Marie; Dupé, Bertrand; Lopes, Rafael; Böttcher, Marie; Martins, Maximiliano D.; Balashov, Timofey; Gerhard, Lukas; Sinova, Jairo; Wulfhekel, Wulf

Abstract:
Skyrmions are topologically protected non-collinear magnetic structures. Their stability is ideally suited to carry information in, e.g., racetrack memories. The success of such a memory critically depends on the ability to stabilize and manipulate skyrmions at low magnetic fields. The non-collinear Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction originating from spin-orbit coupling drives skyrmion formation. It competes with Heisenberg exchange and magnetic anisotropy favoring collinear states. Isolated skyrmions in ultra-thin films so far required magnetic fields as high as several Tesla. Here, we show that isolated skyrmions in a monolayer of Co/Ru(0001) can be stabilized down to vanishing fields. Even with the weak spin-orbit coupling of the 4d element Ru, homochiral spin spirals and isolated skyrmions were detected with spin-sensitive scanning tunneling microscopy. Density functional theory calculations explain the stability of the chiral magnetic features by the absence of magnetic anisotropy energy.


Zugehörige Institution(en) am KIT Physikalisches Institut (PHI)
Publikationstyp Zeitschriftenaufsatz
Jahr 2018
Sprache Englisch
Identifikator ISSN: 2041-1723
URN: urn:nbn:de:swb:90-814004
KITopen ID: 1000081400
Erschienen in Nature Communications
Band 9
Heft 1
Seiten Art.Nr. 1015
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