Variation of skyrmion forms and their stability in MnSi thin plates

Xiuzhen Yu, Akiko Kikkawa, Daisuke Morikawa, Kiyou Shibata, Yusuke Tokunaga, Yasujiro Taguchi, Yoshinori Tokura

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

45 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

By systematic real-space observations using Lorentz transmission electron microscopy, we report here various forms of skyrmions (and related spin textures) for a prototype of cubic helimagnet MnSi as well as their stability that depends on crystalline-orientation and crystal-plate thickness. Below a crossover thickness (tc ∼ 75 nm) of a sample, the robust two-dimensional hexagonal skyrmion crystal (SkX) appears over a wide window of temperature and magnetic field, regardless of crystal orientation, while the SkX phase region shrinks to a small pocket near the helical transition temperature TN in a (111) plate with the thickness above tc, in contrast to the stable SkX in (110) and (001) plates. This observation indicates the importance of the magnetic anisotropy and thermal fluctuation effects for the skyrmion stability. Furthermore, the forms of skyrmions have been found to change from multidomain state of SkX to skyrmion glass structure via single domain state of SkX with increasing magnetic field.

Original languageEnglish
Article number054411
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Volume91
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015 Feb 17
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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