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Magnetic Skyrmions for Next-Generation Non-Volatile Memory

21 Jul 2017
Magnetic skyrmions are nanoscale topological spin structures offering great promise for next-generation memory technologies. However, translating their promise into viable technology requires the ability to modulate skyrmion properties, and their electrical detection under ambient conditions.
 
Researchers at DSI, NTU, and IHPC have developed a novel, CMOS-compatible thin film material platform that enables bottom-up control of skyrmion properties at room temperature.
 
By varying the thickness of constituent layers, they could smoothly modulate the size, density, and stability of skyrmions. Through this, they could achieve skyrmion configurations tailored to contrasting device requirements - all while using industry-compatible fabrication techniques. In conjunction, the team also demonstrated the world-first electrical detection (Hall effect) of ambient skyrmions.
 
This breakthrough development provides a stepping stone for realizing stable and highly scalable (down to 10nm and below) non-volatile memory.
 

Their paper “Tunable room-temperature magnetic skyrmions in Ir/Fe/Co/Pt multilayers” was published in Nature Materials (Online) on 17 July 2017. Learn more: http://www.nature.com/nmat/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nmat4934.html