Researchers from Shinshu University, the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the University of Tokyo, Tsinghua University, Kyoto University and Nanyang Technological University have experimentally demonstrated a breakthrough in manipulation of skyrmions using only electric field.

The team, led by Professor Xiaoxi Liu of Shinshu University, designed and fabricated magnetic multilayer films in the form of racetracks where the thickness of the films had a slope. They demonstrated that many skyrmion bubbles can be created and directionally displaced about 10 micrometres by applying a voltage as low as 9 volt in a repeatable manner. They also found that the domain wall displacement and velocity induced by the variation of electric field are proportional to the absolute value of voltage.

The new experimental findings show that magnetic multilayer films with artificial gradients in thickness, anisotropy,and Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction can be used for designing electric-field-controlled information devices with ultralow energy consumption.