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Publication Citation: Controlling the Competition between Optically Induced Ultrafast Spin-Flip Scattering and Spin Transport in Magnetic Multilayers

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Author(s): Justin M. Shaw; Hans T. Nembach; Thomas J. Silva; Margaret M. Murnane; Henry C. Kapteyn; Martin Aeschlimann; Claus M. Schneider; Emrah Turgut; Stefan Mathias; Patrik Grychtol; Chan La-O-Vorakiat; Dennis Rudolf; Roman Adam;
Title: Controlling the Competition between Optically Induced Ultrafast Spin-Flip Scattering and Spin Transport in Magnetic Multilayers
Published: May 07, 2013
Abstract: The study of ultrafast dynamics in magnetic materials provides rich opportunities for greater fundamental understanding of correlated phenomena in solid-state matter, because many of the basic microscopic mechanisms involved are as-yet unclear and are still being uncovered. Recently, two different possible mechanisms have been proposed to explain ultrafast laser induced magnetization dynamics: spin currents and spin-flip scattering. In this work, we use multilayers of Fe and Ni with different metals and insulators as the spacer material to conclusively show that spin currents can have a significant contribution to optically induced magnetization dynamics, in addition to spin-flip scattering processes. Moreover, we can control the competition between these two processes, and in some cases completely suppress interlayer spin currents as a sample undergoes rapid demagnetization. Finally, by reversing the order of the Fe/Ni layers, we experimentally show that spin currents are directional in our samples, predominantly flowing from the top to the bottom layer.
Citation: Physical Review Letters
Volume: 110
Issue: 197201
Pages: pp. 1 - 6
Keywords: ultrafast demagnetization;high harmonic generation;spin current
Research Areas: Metals, Magnetic materials, Condensed Matter Physics, Thin-Films, Materials Science, Physics