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Magnonics: Spin waves connecting charges, spins and photons

Chumak, A. V.; Schultheiss, H.
Spin waves (SW) are the excitation of the spin system in a ferromagnetic condensed matter body. They are collective excitations of the electron system and, from a quasi-classical point of view, can be understood as a coherent precession of the electrons' spins. Analogous to photons, they are also referred to as magnons indicating their quasi-particle character. The collective nature of SWs is established by the short-range exchange interaction as well as the non-local magnetic dipolar interaction, resulting in coherence of SWs from mesoscopic to even macroscopic length scales. As one consequence of this collective interaction, SWs are 'charge current free' and, therefore, less subject to dissipation caused by scattering with impurities on the atomic level. This is a clear advantage over diffusive transport in spintronics that not only uses the charge of an electron but also its spin degree of freedom. Any (spin) current naturally involves motion and, thus, scattering of electrons leading to excessive heating as well as losses. This renders SWs a promising alternative to electric (spin) currents for the transport of spin information—one of the grand challenges of condensed matter physics.
Keywords: Magnonics, Spintronics, Photonics, Spin Waves

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Publ.-Id: 25944