Kerr Imaging of a Co/Pt Bimodal Magneto-Optical Medium

Richard A. Fry
Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory

Spatially-resolved magneto-optical (MO) images of a (0.3 nm Co/1.2 nm Pt)15 multilayer film with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy have been obtained by Kerr microscopy. This material exhibits a major hysteresis loop with two-step magnetization reversal. The MO images display four possible "stable" magnetic states distinguished by four different intensities. This behavior is explained by the presence of two different magnetic phases each which has a stable magnetization state either parallel or antiparallel to the applied field, and which may reverse quasi-independently from one another.