Controlling magnetic skyrmion motion without an electric current

Skyrmion Model

Researchers from RCaH and the University of Oxford have used resonant elastic X-ray scattering (REXS) at Diamond for the first demonstration of using a field gradient to control the motion of magnetic skyrmions.

Their work, published in Nature Communications, overcomes the limitations inherent in using electrical currents to control skyrmion motion and opens up new avenues of research in non-conductive (as well as conductive) skyrmion-carrying materials. Ultimately, their results bring us a step closer to high-density, low-power data storage devices based on racetrack memory.

The photograph shows a 3D printed model of a Bloch-type skyrmion.