It is critical to understand the effect of lattice geometry on the order parameter of a condensed matter system, as it controls phase transitions in such systems. Artificial spin ices (ASIs) are two-dimensional lattices of Ising-like nanomagnets that provide an opportunity to explore such phenomena by lithographically controlling the lattice geometry to observe its influence on magnetic ordering and frustration effects. Here we report a systematic approach to studying the effects of disorder in rhombus ASIs generated from combinations of five vertex motifs. We investigate four geometries characterized by a geometric order parameter, with symmetries ranging from periodic to quasiperiodic to random. Lorentz transmission electron microscopy data indicates magnetic domain behavior depends on chains of strongly-coupled islands in the periodic and sixfold-twinned lattices, while the behavior of the disordered lattice is dominated by vertex motifs with large configurational degeneracy. Utilizing micromagnetic simulations, a quantitative analysis of the lattice energetics showed that the experimental rotationally-demagnetized state of the disordered ASI was closer in energy to the idealized ground state compared to other periodic and twinned ASIs. Our work provides a unique pathway for using degeneracy, magnetic frustration, and order to control the magnetization behavior of designer disordered systems.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)