Magnetic skyrmions: Two methods for creating them and guiding their motion

Magnetic skyrmions are extremely small and stable swirls of magnetization, often referred to as “topological quasi-particles” since an emerging stability embraces this spin ensemble. As such, skyrmions can be manipulated while retaining their shape. In ferromagnetic thin films, they can conveniently be created with an electrical current pulse or, even faster, with a laser pulse—albeit, so far, only at random positions in the material. Skyrmions are scientifically interesting from two perspectives: On the one hand, magnetic skyrmions are envisioned as information carriers in future information technology. On the other hand, skyrmions in thin magnetic films may act as an ideal test bed to study the dynamics of topologically non-trivial magnetic quasi-particles.

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