Room-temperature creation and spin–orbit torque manipulation of skyrmions in thin films with engineered asymmetry



Magnetic skyrmions, which are topologically protected spin textures, are promising candidates for ultralowenergy and ultrahigh-density magnetic data storage and computing applications. To date, most experiments on skyrmions have been carried out at low temperatures. The choice of available materials is limited, and there is a lack of electrical means to control skyrmions in devices. In this work, we demonstrate a new method for creating a stable skyrmion bubble phase in the CoFeB−MgO material system at room temperature, by engineering the interfacial perpendicular magnetic anisotropy of the ferromagnetic layer. Importantly, we also demonstrate that artificially engineered symmetry breaking gives rise to a force acting on the skyrmions, in addition to the current-induced spin−orbit torque, which can be used to drive their motion. This room-temperature creation and manipulation of skyrmions offers new possibilities to engineer skyrmionic devices. The results bring skyrmionic memory and logic concepts closer to realization in industrially relevant and manufacturable thin film material systems.

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