The Center for X-Ray Optics is a multi-disciplined research group within Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's (LBNL) Materials Sciences Division (MSD). Notice to users.

The Center for X-Ray Optics

The Center for X-Ray Optics at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory works to further science and technology using short wavelength optical systems and techniques. We create and operate advanced experimental systems to address national needs, support research in material, life, and environmental science, and extend the forefront of semiconductor manufacturing.

"CXRO is a one-of-a-kind facility with over 25 years of experience providing short wavelength optical solutions. From instrument development to scientific discovery, our vertically integrated structure allows us to tackle a full spectrum of research."

Patrick Naulleau
CXRO Director

Photo of Patrick Naulleau, CXRO Staff Scientist

Tailoring Magnetic Skyrmions for Next-Generation Memory

Magnetic skyrmions are nanoscale topological spin structures offering great promise for next-generation memory technologies. However, translating their promise into viable technology requires the ability to modulate skyrmion properties, and their electrical detection under ambient conditions. Partnering with researchers in Singapore we have successfully demonstrated and visualized the control of magnetic properties of skyrmions at room temperature. This was achieved by developing a novel CMOS-compatible thin film material platform enabling the bottom-up control of skyrmion properties. The visualization was achieved by the direct imaging of skyrmions using the CXRO soft x-ray microscope at ALS (BL6.1.2, XM-1). The results demonstrated the ability to modulate the size, density, and stability of skyrmions by varying the thickness of constituent layers - all while using semiconductor industry-compatible fabrication techniques. In conjunction, the world-first electrical detection (Hall effect) of ambient skyrmions was also demonstrated. This breakthrough development provides a stepping stone for realizing stable and highly scalable (10 nm and below) non-volatile memory.

Ref: A. Soumyanarayanan, M. Raju, A. L. Gonzalez Oyarce, Anthony K. C. Tan, Mi-Young Im, A. P. Petrovic, Pin Ho, K. H. Khoo, M. Tran, C. K. Gan, F. Ernult and C. Panagopoulos, Nature Materials, DOI: 10.1038/NMAT4934 (2017).

Read more news highlights