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Structural chirality of polar skyrmions probed by resonant elastic X-ray scattering

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.129.247601 DOI Help

Authors: Margaret R. Mccarter (University of California, Berkeley) , Kook Tae Kim (Soongsil University) , Vladimir A. Stoica (Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory; Pennsylvania State University) , Sujit Das (Indian Institute of Science) , Christoph Klewe (Advanced Light Source, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) , Elizabeth P. Donoway (University of California, Berkeley) , David M. Burn (Diamond Light Source) , Padraic Shafer (Advanced Light Source, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) , Fanny Rodolakis (Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory) , Mauro A. p. Gonçalves (Institute of Physics of the Czech Academy of Sciences) , Fernando Gómez-Ortiz (Universidad de Cantabria) , Jorge Íñiguez (Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST); University of Luxembourg) , Pablo García-Fernández (Universidad de Cantabria) , Javier Junquera (Universidad de Cantabria) , Stephen W. Lovesey (Diamond Light Source; Oxford University) , Gerrit Van Der Laan (Diamond Light Source) , Se Young Park (Soongsil University) , John W. Freeland (Advanced Photon Source, Argonne National Laboratory) , Lane W. Martin (University of California, Berkeley; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) , Dong Ryeol Lee (Soongsil University) , Ramamoorthy Ramesh (University of California, Berkeley; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Physical Review Letters , VOL 129

State: Published (Approved)
Published: December 2022
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 24797

Abstract: An escalating challenge in condensed-matter research is the characterization of emergent order-parameter nanostructures such as ferroelectric and ferromagnetic skyrmions. Their small length scales coupled with complex, three-dimensional polarization or spin structures makes them demanding to trace out fully. Resonant elastic x-ray scattering (REXS) has emerged as a technique to study chirality in spin textures such as skyrmions and domain walls. It has, however, been used to a considerably lesser extent to study analogous features in ferroelectrics. Here, we present a framework for modeling REXS from an arbitrary arrangement of charge quadrupole moments, which can be applied to nanostructures in materials such as ferroelectrics. With this, we demonstrate how extended reciprocal space scans using REXS with circularly polarized x rays can probe the three-dimensional structure and chirality of polar skyrmions. Measurements, bolstered by quantitative scattering calculations, show that polar skyrmions of mixed chirality coexist, and that REXS allows valuation of relative fractions of right- and left-handed skyrmions. Our quantitative analysis of the structure and chirality of polar skyrmions highlights the capability of REXS for establishing complex topological structures toward future application exploits.

Diamond Keywords: Skyrmions

Subject Areas: Materials, Physics

Instruments: I10-Beamline for Advanced Dichroism - scattering

Other Facilities: Advanced Light Source; Advanced Photon Source

Added On: 08/12/2022 08:56

Discipline Tags:

Quantum Materials Physics Hard condensed matter - structures Materials Science

Technical Tags:

Scattering Resonant Elastic X-ray Scattering (REXS)