Spin Transfer Torques in MnSi at Ultralow Current Densities

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Science  17 Dec 2010:
Vol. 330, Issue 6011, pp. 1648-1651
DOI: 10.1126/science.1195709

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Spin manipulation using electric currents is one of the most promising directions in the field of spintronics. We used neutron scattering to observe the influence of an electric current on the magnetic structure in a bulk material. In the skyrmion lattice of manganese silicon, where the spins form a lattice of magnetic vortices similar to the vortex lattice in type II superconductors, we observe the rotation of the diffraction pattern in response to currents that are over five orders of magnitude smaller than those typically applied in experimental studies on current-driven magnetization dynamics in nanostructures. We attribute our observations to an extremely efficient coupling of inhomogeneous spin currents to topologically stable knots in spin structures.

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