Perpendicular magnetic anisotropy: from ultralow power spintronics to cancer therapy

Most thin magnetic films have their magnetization lying in the plane of the film because of shape anisotropy. In recent years there has been a resurgence of interest in thin magnetic films which exhibit a magnetization easy axis along the surface normal due to so-called Perpendicular Magnetic Anisotropy (PMA). PMA has its origins in the symmetry breaking which occurs at surfaces and interfaces and can be strong enough to dominate the magnetic properties of some material systems. In this talk I explain the physics of such materials and show how the magnetic properties associated with PMA are often very well suited to applications. I show three different examples of real and potential applications of PMA materials: ultralow power STT-MRAM memory devices for green computing, 3-dimensional magnetic logic structures and a novel cancer therapy.

Professor Russell Cowburn is the top expert in the field of magnetics and electronics. He invented a number of technologies, including the magnetic logic (Nature and Science reported it in 2005), which greatly promoted the development of spintronics. He also invented the 3d magnetic memory that was published in Nature in 2013. This scientific research achievement made the information dissemination more effective, further improved the data storage capacity of the chip. He was the winner of the GSK Westminster Medal and Prize in 2003, the Degussa Science to Business Award in 2006, the Hermes International Technology Award in 2007 and the Institute of Physics Paterson Medal and Prize in 2008. As the outstanding contribution that Professor Russell Cowburn has made in the field of spintronics, he was elected as the youngest Fellow of the Royal Society in 2010. Until now, he has had over 60 patents granted and more than ten papers published in Nature, Science and hundreds of papers in other important international academic journals, like Phys. Rev. Lett.

Time: September 24, 2015, 10:00-12:00
Location: IRC 308