Symmetry-breaking interlayer Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interactions in synthetic antiferromagnets

Fernandez-Pacheco, A. , Vedmedenko, E., Ummelen, F., Mansell, R., Petit, D. and Cowburn, R. P. (2019) Symmetry-breaking interlayer Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interactions in synthetic antiferromagnets. Nature Materials, 18, pp. 679-684. (doi: 10.1038/s41563-019-0386-4) (PMID:31160802)

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The magnetic interfacial Dzyaloshinskii–Moriya interaction (DMI) in multilayered thin films can lead to chiral spin states, which are of paramount importance for future spintronic technologies1,2. Interfacial DMI typically manifests as an intralayer interaction, mediated via a paramagnetic heavy metal in systems lacking inversion symmetry3. Here we show that, by designing synthetic antiferromagnets with canted magnetization states4,5, it is also possible to observe direct evidence of the interfacial interlayer DMI at room temperature. The interlayer DMI breaks the symmetry of the magnetic reversal process via the emergence of non-collinear spin states, which results in chiral exchange-biased hysteresis loops. The spin chiral interlayer interactions reported here are expected to manifest in a range of multilayered thin-film systems, opening up as yet unexplored avenues for the development and exploitation of chiral effects in magnetic heterostructures.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:AFP acknowledges funding from an EPSRC Early Career Fellowship EP/M008517/1, and from the Winton Program for the Physics of Sustainability. EV from Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under Grant Agreement No. 665095 (MAGicSky). DP and RPC from the Templeton World Charity Foundation. FU thanks the Erasmus Mobility program.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Fernandez-Pacheco, Dr Amalio
Authors: Fernandez-Pacheco, A., Vedmedenko, E., Ummelen, F., Mansell, R., Petit, D., and Cowburn, R. P.
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > School of Physics and Astronomy
Journal Name:Nature Materials
Publisher:Nature Research
ISSN (Online):1476-4660
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 Springer Nature
First Published:First published in Nature Materials 18:679-684
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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