Helicity-Preserving Metasurfaces for Magneto-Optical Enhancement in Ferromagnetic [Pt/Co]N Films

John M. Abendroth*, Michelle L. Solomon, David R. Barton, Mohammed S. El Hadri, Eric E. Fullerton, Jennifer A. Dionne*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


All-optical control and detection of magnetic states for high-density recording necessitate nanophotonic approaches to amplify local light intensity below the diffraction limit. Sculpting the near-field phase and polarization can additionally strengthen magneto-optical effects that rely on circularly polarized pulses, such as all-optical helicity-dependent switching, imaging, and spin-wave excitation. Here, high-refractive-index dielectric nanoantennas illuminated with circularly polarized light resonantly enhance local electric field rotation by more than sixfold within [Pt/Co]N thin films. Sub-wavelength arrays of amorphous Si nanodisks, or metasurfaces, patterned on perpendicularly magnetized films support Mie-type resonances that modulate reflection and transmission dissymmetry by >±2% in experiments. Spatial and spectral interference between dipolar modes, proximity effects, and gain are evaluated by varying disk aspect ratio, metasurface–metal separation, and magnetic film thickness, respectively. Simulated enhancements in magnetic circular birefringence and differential absorption are correlated with amplified local field rotation at electric dipolar modes. Greater achievable amplifications are shown via simulations with single-crystalline Si metasurfaces exhibiting lower losses, including a 12-fold strengthened electric field rotation within ferromagnetic layers. The metasurface design rules established here could enable nanoscale localization of all-optical magnetic switching with lowered laser fluence thresholds, as well as enhanced magneto-optical responses for light-assisted reading in spintronic devices.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2001420
JournalAdvanced Optical Materials
Issue number22
StatePublished - Nov 18 2020


  • dielectric nanoparticles
  • magnetic circular dichroism
  • Mie resonances
  • optical magnetism
  • photospintronics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics


Dive into the research topics of 'Helicity-Preserving Metasurfaces for Magneto-Optical Enhancement in Ferromagnetic [Pt/Co]N Films'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this