Room-Temperature Creation and Spin-Orbit Torque Manipulation of Skyrmions in Thin Films with Engineered Asymmetry

Guoqiang Yu, Pramey Upadhyaya, Xiang Li, Wenyuan Li, Se Kwon Kim, Yabin Fan, Kin L. Wong, Yaroslav Tserkovnyak, Pedram Khalili Amiri*, Kang L. Wang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

268 Scopus citations


Magnetic skyrmions, which are topologically protected spin textures, are promising candidates for ultralow-energy and ultrahigh-density magnetic data storage and computing applications. To date, most experiments on skyrmions have been carried out at low temperatures. The choice of available materials is limited, and there is a lack of electrical means to control skyrmions in devices. In this work, we demonstrate a new method for creating a stable skyrmion bubble phase in the CoFeB-MgO material system at room temperature, by engineering the interfacial perpendicular magnetic anisotropy of the ferromagnetic layer. Importantly, we also demonstrate that artificially engineered symmetry breaking gives rise to a force acting on the skyrmions, in addition to the current-induced spin-orbit torque, which can be used to drive their motion. This room-temperature creation and manipulation of skyrmions offers new possibilities to engineer skyrmionic devices. The results bring skyrmionic memory and logic concepts closer to realization in industrially relevant and manufacturable thin film material systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1981-1988
Number of pages8
JournalNano letters
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 9 2016


  • Skyrmion
  • room temperature
  • spin-orbit torque
  • symmetry breaking
  • thin films

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science


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