Micromagnetics technologies constitute the foundation of computer storage devices. Exponential growth in the size of portable magnetic memories accompanied by decrease cost-per-byte is evidence of success in this technology. To sustain this growth engineers and scientists are increasingly using simulation to leverage understanding of fundamental physics governing nanoscale magnetic interactions and overall device behavior.
Micromagnetics research at NIST cross-cuts applications and operating units (see related links). For purposes of numerical simulation, MCSD researchers have developed a widely used public domain computer code, the Object Oriented Micromagnetics Framework (OOMMF). OOMMF was designed with a modular structure that allows independent developers to contribute extensions to the core functionalities of the package. As it currently stands, OOMMF is capable of solving several key magnetics problems, static and dynamic, in two and three dimensions.
In addition to providing a fully functional micromagnetic modeling system, OOMMF serves as an open, well-documented environment in which competing algorithms can be verified on benchmark problems. Under the Virtual Measurement Systems Program, this project supports the development of quantitative simulation tools by providing a forum for specification and comparison of solutions to standard problems. This technical coordination represents a balance between widespread and open dissemination of consensus understanding of relevant physics and computational abilities to model them, and proprietary innovation leading to market development of new magnetic storage devices.