Systematic layer-by-layer characterization of multilayers for three-dimensional data storage and logic

D. Petit, R. Lavrijsen, J. Lee, R. Mansell, A. Fernández-Pacheco, R.P. Cowburn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
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Magnetic kink solitons are used as a probe to experimentally measure the layer-by-layer coercivity and interlayer coupling strength of an antiferromagnetically coupled perpendicularly magnetized Co multilayer. The magnetic response is well described by a nearest neighbor Ising macrospin model. By controlling the position of one, two or three solitons in the stack using globally applied magnetic fields, we successfully probe the switching of individual buried layers under different neighboring configurations, allowing us to access individual layer's characteristic parameters. We found the coercivity to increase dramatically up the multilayer, while the interlayer coupling strength decreased slightly. We corroborate these findings with scanning transmission electron microscopy images where a degrading quality of the multilayer is observed. This method provides a very powerful tool to characterize the quality of individual layers in complex multilayers, without the need for depth-sensitive magnetic characterization equipment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number155203
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2016


  • magnetic kink soliton
  • magnetic multilayer
  • nano-scale shift register
  • perpendicular
  • spintronics

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