Reconfigurable magnetic domain wall pinning using vortex-generated magnetic fields

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Although often important for domain wall device applications, reproducible fabrication of pinning sites at the nano-scale remains challenging. Here, we demonstrate that the stray magnetic field generated beneath magnetic vortex cores can be used to generate localized pinning sites for magnetic domain walls in an underlying, perpendicularly magnetized nanostrip. Moreover, we show that the pinning strength can be tuned by switching the vortex core polarity: switching the core polarity so that it is aligned with the magnetization of the expanding domain (rather than against it) can reduce the vortex-mediated wall depinning field by between 40% and 90%, depending on the system geometry. Significant reductions in the depinning field are also demonstrated in narrow strips by shifting the core away from the strips' centers.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number18
Early online date2 May 2017
StatePublished - 2017

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