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Tuning of the Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction by He+ ion irradiation

Nembach, H. T.; Jué, E.; Potzger, K.; Faßbender, J.; Silva, T. J.; Shaw, J. M.


We studied the impact of He+ irradiation on the Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction (DMI) in Ta/Co20Fe60B20/Pt/MgO samples. We found that irradiation of 40 keV He+ ions increases the DMI by approximately 20% for fluences up to 2 × 1016 ions/cm2 before it decreases for higher fluence values. In contrast, the interfacial anisotropy shows a distinctly different fluence dependence. To better understand the impact of the ion irradiation on the Ta and Pt interfaces with the Co20Fe60B20 layer, we carried out Monte-Carlo simulations, which showed an expected increase in disorder at the interfaces. A moderate increase in disorder increases the total number of triplets for the three-site exchange mechanism and consequently increases the DMI. Our results demonstrate the significance of disorder for the total DMI.

Keywords: Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction; Fluence dependence; Ions irradiation

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