Magnetization Directions of Individual Nanoparticles

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Science  16 Apr 1999:
Vol. 284, Issue 5413, pp. 470-473
DOI: 10.1126/science.284.5413.470

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The magnetization directions of individual monodomain nanoparticles as small as 5 nanometers in diameter are determined using the Foucault method of Lorentz microscopy. A model is developed to explain the images and diffraction patterns of samarium cobalt nanoparticles as a function of the aperture shift direction. Thermally induced changes in the magnetization direction of superparamagnetic magnetite nanoparticles were observed but with a much slower rate than expected, due to surface anisotropy. When the time scale for magnetization reversal is much shorter than the data acquisition time, as in carbon-coated iron cobalt alloy nanoparticles, the images show an average of such thermally induced changes.

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