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  1. Abstract

    Magnetic skyrmions are topologically nontrivial spin textures with envisioned applications in energy-efficient magnetic information storage. Toggling the presence of magnetic skyrmions via writing/deleting processes is essential for spintronics applications, which usually require the application of a magnetic field, a gate voltage or an electric current. Here we demonstrate the reversible field-free writing/deleting of skyrmions at room temperature, via hydrogen chemisorption/desorption on the surface of Ni and Co films. Supported by Monte-Carlo simulations, the skyrmion creation/annihilation is attributed to the hydrogen-induced magnetic anisotropy change on ferromagnetic surfaces. We also demonstrate the role of hydrogen and oxygen on magnetic anisotropy and skyrmion deletion on other magnetic surfaces. Our results open up new possibilities for designing skyrmionic and magneto-ionic devices.

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  2. Abstract

    Room‐temperature magnetic skyrmion materials exhibiting robust topological Hall effect (THE) are crucial for novel nano‐spintronic devices. However, such skyrmion‐hosting materials are rare in nature. In this study, a self‐intercalated transition metal dichalcogenide Cr1+xTe2with a layered crystal structure that hosts room‐temperature skyrmions and exhibits large THE is reported. By tuning the self‐intercalate concentration, a monotonic control of Curie temperature from 169 to 333 K and a magnetic anisotropy transition from out‐of‐plane to the in‐plane configuration are achieved. Based on the intercalation engineering, room‐temperature skyrmions are successfully created in Cr1.53Te2with a Curie temperature of 295 K and a relatively weak perpendicular magnetic anisotropy. Remarkably, a skyrmion‐induced topological Hall resistivity as large as ≈106 nΩ cm is observed at 290 K. Moreover, a sign reversal of THE is also found at low temperatures, which can be ascribed to other topological spin textures having an opposite topological charge to that of the skyrmions. Therefore, chromium telluride can be a new paradigm of the skyrmion material family with promising prospects for future device applications.

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  3. Abstract

    The search for efficient approaches to realize local switching of magnetic moments in spintronic devices has attracted extensive attention. One of the most promising approaches is the electrical manipulation of magnetization through electron‐mediated spin torque. However, the Joule heat generated via electron motion unavoidably causes substantial energy dissipation and potential damage to spintronic devices. Here, all‐oxide heterostructures of SrRuO3/NiO/SrIrO3are epitaxially grown on SrTiO3single‐crystal substrates following the order of the ferromagnetic transition metal oxide SrRuO3with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy, insulating and antiferromagnetic NiO, and metallic transition metal oxide SrIrO3with strong spin–orbit coupling. It is demonstrated that instead of the electron spin torques, the magnon torques present in the antiferromagnetic NiO layer can directly manipulate the perpendicular magnetization of the ferromagnetic layer. This magnon mechanism may significantly reduce the electron motion‐related energy dissipation from electron‐mediated spin currents. Interestingly, the threshold current density to generate a sufficient magnon current to manipulate the magnetization is one order of magnitude smaller than that in conventional metallic systems. These findings suggest a route for developing highly efficient all‐oxide spintronic devices operated by magnon current.

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  4. Abstract

    Skyrmion helicity, which defines the spin swirling direction, is a fundamental parameter that may be utilized to encode data bits in future memory devices. Generally, in centrosymmetric ferromagnets, dipole skyrmions with helicity of −π/2 and π/2 are degenerate in energy, leading to equal populations of both helicities. On the other hand, in chiral materials where the Dzyaloshinskii–Moriya interaction (DMI) prevails and the dipolar interaction is negligible, only a preferred helicity is selected by the type of DMI. However, whether there is a rigid boundary between these two regimes remains an open question. Herein, the observation of dipole skyrmions with unconventional helicity polarization in a van der Waals ferromagnet, Fe5−δGeTe2, is reported. Combining magnetometry, Lorentz transmission electron microscopy, electrical transport measurements, and micromagnetic simulations, the short‐range superstructures in Fe5−δGeTe2resulting in a localized DMI contribution, which breaks the degeneracy of the opposite helicities and leads to the helicity polarization, is demonstrated. Therefore, the helicity feature in Fe5−δGeTe2is controlled by both the dipolar interaction and DMI that the former leads to Bloch‐type skyrmions with helicity of ±π/2 whereas the latter breaks the helicity degeneracy. This work provides new insights into the skyrmion topology in van der Waals materials.

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  5. The first-order reversal curve (FORC) method is a macroscopic measurement technique that can be used to extract quantitative and microscopic properties of hysteretic systems. Using magnetic transmission x-ray microscopy (MTXM), local element-specific FORC measurements are performed on a 20 nm thick film of CoTb. The FORCs measured with microscopy reveal a step-by-step domain evolution under the magnetic field cycling protocol and provide a direct visualization of the mechanistic interpretation of FORC diagrams. They are compared with magnetometry FORCs and show good quantitative agreement. Furthermore, the high spatial resolution and element-specific sensitivity of MTXM provide new capabilities to measure FORCs in small regions or specific phases within multicomponent systems, including buried layers in heterostructures. The ability to perform FORCs on very small features is demonstrated with the MTXM-FORC measurement of a rectangular microstructure with vortex-like Landau structures. This work demonstrates the confluence of two uniquely powerful techniques to achieve quantitative insight into nanoscale magnetic behavior. 
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