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EPSRC Reference: EP/N032128/1
Title: Skyrmionics: From Magnetic Excitations to Functioning Low-Energy Devices
Principal Investigator: Hatton, Professor PD
Other Investigators:
Lancaster, Professor T Lees, Professor MR Paul, Professor DM
Hesjedal, Professor T Hovorka, Dr O Balakrishnan, Professor G
Midgley, Professor PA Fangohr, Professor H
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Dr JC Loudon
Project Partners:
Cardiff University Dalhousie University Diamond Light Source
European Synch Radiation Facility - ESRF IBM UK Ltd Institute Max von Laue - Paul Langevin
ISIS Nat Synchrotron Radiation Res Ctr NSRRC PSI
Samsung R&D Institute UK Seagate Technology Tamkang University
Technical University of Munich Toshiba University of Parma
Department: Physics
Organisation: Durham, University of
Scheme: Programme Grants
Starts: 20 July 2016 Ends: 19 January 2023 Value (£): 5,101,385
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Condensed Matter Physics Magnetism/Magnetic Phenomena
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Electronics Information Technologies
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
20 Apr 2016 Programme Grant Interviews - 20 -21 April 2016 (Physical Sciences) Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
Tony Skyrme proposed that under special circumstances it is possible to stabilize vortex-like whirls in fields to produce topologically stable objects. This idea, effectively of creating a new type of fundamental particle, has been realised with the recent discovery of skyrmions in magnetic materials. The confirmation of the existence of skyrmions in chiral magnets and of their self-organization into a skyrmion lattice has made skyrmion physics arguably the hottest topic in magnetism research at the moment. Skyrmions are excitations of matter whose occurrence and collective properties are mysterious, but which hold promise for advancing our basic understanding of matter and also for technological deployment as highly efficient memory elements. Following the discovery of skyrmions in a variety of materials, several urgent questions remain which are holding back the field: what are the general properties of the phase transitions that lead to the skyrmion lattice phase, the nature of its structure, excitations and stability and how might we exploit the unique magnetic properties of this matter in future devices? These questions have only recently begun to be addressed by several large international consortia and are far from being resolved. For the UK to contend in this highly competitive field a major project is required that brings together UK experts in materials synthesis and state-of-the-art theoretical and experimental techniques. We propose the first funded UK national programme to investigate skyrmions, skyrmion lattices and skyrmionic devices. Our systematic approach, combining experts from different fields is aimed at answering basic questions about the status of magnetic skyrmions and working with industrial partners to develop technological applications founded on this physics.
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