MAGNETISM

Manipulating an antiferromagnet

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Science  20 Apr 2018:
Vol. 360, Issue 6386, pp. 281-282
DOI: 10.1126/science.360.6386.281-e

Magnetic materials are routinely used in electronic devices, and the ability to change their magnetic state using electric fields is highly desirable. Most devices use ferromagnets—materials in which individual atomic spins all point in one direction—but there are important advantages to developing analogous devices with antiferromagnetic (AFM) materials. Liu et al. made thin films of the AFM MnPt3, a material that transitions from a noncollinear to a collinear AFM state a bit above room temperature. The thin films were grown on a ferroelectric substrate; applying an electric field to the substrate near the transition temperature changed the strain in the MnPt3 film, which in turn caused the film to change its spin structure from collinear to noncollinear.

Nat. Electron. 1, 172 (2018).

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