Fast and selective optical heating for functional nanomagnetic metamaterials | 1/23/2019 | Staff
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In a recent article published in Nanoscale, researchers from the Nanomagnetism group at nanoGUNE have demonstrated the use of hybrid magnetic-plasmonic elements to facilitate contactless and selective temperature control in magnetic functional metamaterials.

Compared to current global heating schemes, which are slow and energy-inefficient, light-controlled heating using optical degrees of freedom such as wavelength, polarisation, and power, enables efficient local heating schemes for the use in nanomagnetic computation or to quantify collective emergent phenomena in artificial spin systems.

Magnets - Interactions - Metamaterials - Applications - Data

Single-domain nanoscale magnets interacting via contactless magneto-static interactions are key metamaterials for applications including magnetic data storage devices, low-power information processing, and studying collective phenomena in so-called artificial ices. These magnetic metamaterials are fabricated using electron-beam nano-lithography where any desired two-dimensional arrangement of thin-film magnetic elements with dimensions of a few hundred nanometers can be designed.

The functionality of such magnetic metamaterials is determined by the capability to reverse the net moment of each nanomagnet to minimize the overall mutual magnetostatic interactions, which happens more quickly at elevated temperatures. Over the years, different heating schemes have been employed to drive networks of interacting nanomagnets to an equilibrium state, ranging from thermal annealing of stable magnets to the fabrication of rapidly-fluctuating ultrathin superparamagnetic elements.

Excitation - Spin - Systems - Contact - Reservoir

Currently, thermal excitation of artificial spin systems is achieved by thermal contact to a hot reservoir, either by heating the entire underlying substrate, or by an electrical current in a conductive wire nearby. All these approaches are energetically inefficient, spatially non-discriminative, and intrinsically slow, with...
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