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Optical skyrmions: A new topological state of light

2019 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO), 2019

We experimentally demonstrate a new topology for light: optical skyrmions. This discovery may allow a variety of applications, from stimulated creation of skyrmions in matter to new paradigms in optical information processing. © 2019 The Author(s).


Erratum to “gpu accelerated atomistic energy barrier calculations of skyrmion annihilations” [nov 18 art. no. 7206105]

IEEE Transactions on Magnetics, 2019

Equations (1) and (7) in the original publication [1] exhibit a wrong sign for the dipole-dipole interaction. Equation (1) should have been written as


Low-Power (1T1N) Skyrmionic Synapses for Spiking Neuromorphic Systems

IEEE Access, 2019

In this paper, we propose a “1-transistor 1-nanotrack” (1T1N) synapse based on the movement of magnetic skyrmions using spin-polarized current pulses. The proposed synaptic bit-cell has four terminals and fully decoupled spike transmission and programming paths. With careful tuning of programming parameters, we ensure multi-level non-volatile conductance evolution in the proposed skyrmionic synapse. Through micromagnetic simulations, we studied in detail ...


Advanced Nanoscale Magnetic Tunnel Junctions for Low Power Computing (Invited)

2018 IEEE 13th Nanotechnology Materials and Devices Conference (NMDC), 2018

Nanoscale magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) has become a competitive candidate for low power computing, and many progresses were recently made. In this invited paper, we give an overview of our recent achievements in this topic. First, we present a MTJ with atom-thick tungsten spacer and bridging layer, which simultaneously shows the high perpendicular anisotropy, large tunnel magnetorisistance ratio, small resistance-area ...


Cache Memory Design With Magnetic Skyrmions in a Long Nanotrack

IEEE Transactions on Magnetics, 2019

Magnetic skyrmion (MS), a vortexlike region with reversed magnetization in nanomagnets, has recently emerged as an exciting development in the field of spintronics. It has a number of beneficial features, including remarkably high stability, ultralow depinning current density, and extremely compact size. Due to these benefits, skyrmions have generated great interest in the design of spintronic memory. In this paper, ...


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  • Optical skyrmions: A new topological state of light

    We experimentally demonstrate a new topology for light: optical skyrmions. This discovery may allow a variety of applications, from stimulated creation of skyrmions in matter to new paradigms in optical information processing. © 2019 The Author(s).

  • Erratum to “gpu accelerated atomistic energy barrier calculations of skyrmion annihilations” [nov 18 art. no. 7206105]

    Equations (1) and (7) in the original publication [1] exhibit a wrong sign for the dipole-dipole interaction. Equation (1) should have been written as

  • Low-Power (1T1N) Skyrmionic Synapses for Spiking Neuromorphic Systems

    In this paper, we propose a “1-transistor 1-nanotrack” (1T1N) synapse based on the movement of magnetic skyrmions using spin-polarized current pulses. The proposed synaptic bit-cell has four terminals and fully decoupled spike transmission and programming paths. With careful tuning of programming parameters, we ensure multi-level non-volatile conductance evolution in the proposed skyrmionic synapse. Through micromagnetic simulations, we studied in detail the impact of the programming conditions (current density and pulse width) on synaptic performance parameters, such as the number of conductance levels and energy per transition. The programming parameters used for all further analysis gave rise to a synapse with 7 distinct conductance states and 1.2 fJ per conductance state transition event. Exploiting bidirectional conductance modulation, the 1T1N synapse is able to undergo long-term potentiation and depression according to a simplified variant of the biological spike timing-dependent plasticity rule. We present a subthreshold CMOS spike generator circuit which when coupled with a well-known subthreshold integrator circuit produces custom pre- and post-neuronal spike shapes responsible for implementing unsupervised learning with the proposed 1T1N synaptic bit-cell and consuming ~0.25 pJ/event. A spiking neural network incorporating the characteristics of the 1T1N synapse was simulated for two separate applications: pattern extraction from noisy video streams and handwritten digit classification.

  • Advanced Nanoscale Magnetic Tunnel Junctions for Low Power Computing (Invited)

    Nanoscale magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) has become a competitive candidate for low power computing, and many progresses were recently made. In this invited paper, we give an overview of our recent achievements in this topic. First, we present a MTJ with atom-thick tungsten spacer and bridging layer, which simultaneously shows the high perpendicular anisotropy, large tunnel magnetorisistance ratio, small resistance-area product, low write current density, and high robustness to annealing. Second, we propose a novel magnetic memory named NAND-SPIN addressing the drawbacks of the mainstream spin transfer torque and spin orbit torque based MTJs. Finally, we extend the MTJs to the neuromorphic application by creating skyrmions in the free layer during the magnetization switching.

  • Cache Memory Design With Magnetic Skyrmions in a Long Nanotrack

    Magnetic skyrmion (MS), a vortexlike region with reversed magnetization in nanomagnets, has recently emerged as an exciting development in the field of spintronics. It has a number of beneficial features, including remarkably high stability, ultralow depinning current density, and extremely compact size. Due to these benefits, skyrmions have generated great interest in the design of spintronic memory. In this paper, we evaluate the use of skyrmion-based memory as a last-level cache for general-purpose processors. In the skyrmion-based memory structure, data can be densely packed as multiple bits in a long magnetic nanotrack. Write operations are performed by injecting a spin- polarized current in the nanotrack. Since multiple skyrmions (each representing a bit) are packed into a single nanotrack, they need to be accessed by shifting them along the nanotrack with a charge current passing through a spin-Hall metal (SHM). We identify the following key challenges associated with MS-based cache design: 1) the high-current requirements for skyrmion nucleation limit the density benefits offered by these structures, since the transistor supplying write currents is the limiting factor that determines the bit-cell area; 2) the proposed nanotrack structure results in significant performance overheads due to the latency arising from the shift operations; 3) the skyrmions move toward the edge of the nanotrack during shift operations owing to the Magnus force. Hence, an additional idle operation time is required to relax skyrmions back through the repulsive force from the edge; and 4) to avoid annihilation of skyrmions from the edge, the duration and the current density of the shift operation have to be well controlled. To overcome these challenges, a multi-bit skyrmion cell with appropriate peripheral circuit is proposed, considering the heterogeneity in the read/write characteristics. The density benefits are explored by performing the layout of different multi-bit cells. We perform a systematic device-circuit-architecture co-design to evaluate the feasibility of our proposal. Our experiments demonstrate the potential of, and the challenges involved in, using skyrmion-based memory as last-level caches.

  • SkyLogic—A Proposal for a Skyrmion-Based Logic Device

    This paper proposes a novel logic device (SkyLogic) based on skyrmions that are magnetic vortex-like structures having low depinning current density and are robust to defects. A charge current sent through a polarizer ferromagnet (P-FM) nucleates a skyrmion at the input end of an intragate FM interconnect with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA-FM). The output end of the PMA-FM forms the free layer of an magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) stack. A spin Hall metal (SHM) is placed beneath the PMA-FM. The skyrmion is propagated to the output end of the PMA-FM by passing a charge current through the SHM. The resistance of the MTJ stack is low (high) when a skyrmion is present (absent) in the free layer, thereby realizing an inverter. A framework is developed to analyze the performance of the SkyLogic device. A circuit-level technique is developed that counters the transverse displacement of skyrmion in the PMA-FM and allows the use of high current densities for the fast propagation. The design space exploration of the PMA-FM material parameters is performed to obtain an optimal design point. At the optimal point, we obtain an inverter delay of 434 ps with a switching energy of 7.1 fJ.



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