Gateable skyrmion transport via field-induced potential barrier modulation
Fook, Hiu Tung
Gan, Wei Liang
Lew, Wen Siang
Date of Issue2016
School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
We report on the influence of pinning potentials on current-driven skyrmion dynamics and demonstrate that skyrmions can be gated via either magnetic or electric fields. When encountering pinning potentials, skyrmions are well known to simply skirt around them. However, we show that skyrmions can be depinned much more easily when their driving force is oriented against the pinning site rather that the intuitive option of being oriented away. This observation can be exploited together with the normally undesirable Magnus force for the creation of a skyrmion diode. The phenomenon is explained by the increased skyrmion compression resulting from the spin transfer torque opposing the repulsive potential. The smaller skyrmion size then experiences a reduced pinning potential. For practical low-power device applications, we show that the same skyrmion compression can be recreated by applying either a magnetic or electric field. Our analysis provides an insight on the skyrmion dynamics and manipulation that is critical for the realization of skyrmion-based transistors and low-power memory.
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