Dr. Murray Wilson - Memorial University


Title:  MagneticSkyrmions and their Current-Induced Motion


Skyrmions area topologically non-trivial magnetic state that has been observed in a numberof different magnetic materials, such as the chiral cubic magnets Cu2OSeO3,FeGe, and MnSi. In these non-centrosymmetric systems, competition between thesymmetric exchange interaction and Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction results inthe formation of incommensurate spin textures, such as the vortex-likeskyrmions. In metallic systems, such as FeGe, these skyrmions can bemanipulated by small electrical currents, with motion occurring at very smallcurrent densities. This raises the possibility for them to be used in ultra-lowenergy electronic applications, such as memory devices or stochasticcomputing.  In this talk, I will introduce general features of the skyrmionstate, and present recent work on skyrmions in bulk and thin lamella of FeGeand Cu2OSeO3, investigated using X-ray and neutronscattering. In particular, I will discuss various ways to modify the stabilityand metastability of skyrmions in these systems, as well as investigations ofthe current-induced motion of skyrmions in sample with variable thickness andthe prospects of this leading towards potential applications.


Studies werebegun at Laurentian University, where I completed a BSc in Physics. I thencontinued with graduate studies at Dalhousie University, earning a MSc inPhysics studying magnetic skyrmions with Ted Monchesky. I moved to McMaste tocomplete my graduate studies completing a PhD with Graeme Luke studyingsuperconductors and magnetic materials. I then took up a post-doctoral positionwith an NSERC postdoctoral fellowship at Durham University, UK, working in theUK Skyrmion project with researchers across the country. Most recently, I beganwork as an assistant professor at Memorial University in July 2022 where I amcontinuing my study of magnetic materials.

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McMaster University - Faculty of Science | Physics & Astronomy