Quantum Leap in Electronics: Fusion of Twistronics and Spintronics

by Santiago Fernandez
moiré magnetism

In the realm of quantum physics, the emerging field of twistronics involves layering van der Waals materials to unearth new quantum behaviors. A significant advancement in this area has been achieved by Purdue University researchers. They have incorporated quantum spin into twisted double bilayers of antiferromagnetic materials, creating adjustable moiré magnetic patterns. This development opens up potential new avenues in the field of spintronics, with implications for the future of memory devices and spin-based logic systems. Source: SciTechPost.com

Purdue University’s team in quantum physics has made notable strides by manipulating double bilayers of antiferromagnetic materials to produce adjustable moiré magnetism.

Twistronics, far from being a trendy dance or musical genre, represents a cutting-edge development in quantum physics and materials science. This technique involves stacking van der Waals materials in a manner akin to layering sheets of paper, allowing for easy rotation and manipulation. Through these stacked layers, quantum physicists have discovered fascinating quantum phenomena.

By integrating the concept of quantum spin with twisted double bilayers of an antiferromagnet, researchers have unlocked the potential for tunable moiré magnetism. This innovation heralds a new class of materials for the burgeoning fields of twistronics and spintronics, potentially leading to groundbreaking memory and spin-logic devices, and opening new possibilities in physics and spintronic applications.

Utilizing van der Waals magnets, Purdue University’s team has been able to produce non-collinear magnetic states with notable electrical tunability. Credit: Ryan Allen, Second Bay Studios

The team at Purdue University, specializing in quantum physics and materials research, has employed CrI3, a van der Waals (vdW) material with interlayer antiferromagnetic coupling, to manipulate spin. Their research, titled “Electrically tunable moiré magnetism in twisted double bilayers of chromium triiodide,” published in Nature Electronics, presents groundbreaking findings.

Dr. Guanghui Cheng, co-lead author of the study, explains, “We engineered twisted double bilayer CrI3, creating a twist angle between two bilayers. Our findings reveal moiré magnetism characterized by diverse magnetic phases and significant electrical tunability.”

The research showcases the moiré superlattice structure in twisted double bilayer (tDB) CrI3 and its magnetic properties ascertained through magneto-optical-Kerr-effect (MOKE) analysis. The study illustrates how non-collinear magnetic states can emerge in this structure and the coexistence of antiferromagnetic and ferromagnetic orders, a signature trait of moiré magnetism. Credit: Illustration by Guanghui Cheng and Yong P. Chen

Chen highlights, “By stacking and twisting an antiferromagnet onto itself, we achieved a transformation into a ferromagnet. This exemplifies the emerging field of moiré magnetism in twisted 2D materials, where the twisting angle dramatically alters material properties.”

Describing their method, Cheng adds, “We employed the tear-and-stack technique to fabricate twisted double bilayer CrI3. Using MOKE measurement, we detected both ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic orders, the hallmark of moiré magnetism, and demonstrated voltage-assisted magnetic switching.”

Previously, twistronics mainly focused on adjusting electronic properties, like with twisted bilayer graphene. The Purdue team, however, sought to apply this concept to the spin degree of freedom using CrI3. By fabricating samples with varying twist angles, they were able to observe new magnetic behaviors.

Theoretical support for this experiment was provided by Upadhyaya’s team, validating the observations made by Chen’s team.

Upadhyaya states, “Our theoretical work unveiled a complex phase diagram with various non-collinear phases. This research aligns with Chen’s team’s ongoing investigations into novel physics and properties of 2D magnets.”

“This research signifies a new direction for spintronics and magnetoelectronics,” Chen remarks. “The observed phenomena, such as voltage-assisted magnetic switching, could lead to innovative memory and spin-logic devices. The twist introduces a new variable in the study of vdW magnets, paving the way for exploring new physics and spintronic applications.”

Reference: “Electrically tunable moiré magnetism in twisted double bilayers of chromium triiodide” by Guanghui Cheng et al., 19 June 2023, Nature Electronics. DOI: 10.1038/s41928-023-00978-0

The Purdue team, led by Dr. Guanghui Cheng and Mohammad Mushfiqur Rahman, has contributed significantly to this research. Cheng, formerly a postdoc in Dr. Yong P. Chen’s group at Purdue, is now an Assistant Professor at Tohoku University’s AIMR, while Rahman is a Ph.D. student in Dr. Pramey Upadhyaya’s group. Both Chen and Upadhy

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about moiré magnetism

What is the key advancement made by Purdue University in the field of quantum physics?

Purdue University researchers have made a significant advancement in quantum physics by integrating quantum spin into twisted double bilayers of antiferromagnetic materials. This has led to the creation of adjustable moiré magnetic patterns, potentially revolutionizing the field of spintronics and impacting the development of memory devices and spin-based logic systems.

What are twistronics and spintronics, as mentioned in the research?

Twistronics is an emerging field in quantum physics and materials science that involves stacking van der Waals materials in layers to discover new quantum phenomena. Spintronics, on the other hand, refers to the study of the intrinsic spin of the electron and its associated magnetic moment, in addition to its fundamental electronic charge, in solid-state devices.

How does the research at Purdue University contribute to the field of twistronics?

The research at Purdue University has contributed to twistronics by demonstrating tunable moiré magnetism through the manipulation of twisted double bilayers of an antiferromagnetic material. This finding suggests new material platforms for spintronics and promises advancements in memory and spin-logic devices.

What is the significance of moiré magnetism in this research?

Moire magnetism is significant in this research as it represents a novel form of magnetism featuring spatially varying ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic phases. It’s observed in the moiré superlattice structure of twisted double bilayer chromium triiodide (CrI3), and is characterized by the coexistence of ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic orders, which is pivotal for advancing spintronics.

What future applications are anticipated from this research in quantum physics?

The advancements in twistronics and spintronics from this research have the potential to lead to innovative memory and spin-logic devices. The manipulation of moiré magnetism and the introduction of new materials in spintronics could open up new avenues in electronics, potentially revolutionizing how data storage and computational logic are approached.

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Samantha R. December 25, 2023 - 9:10 am

its impressive how twistronics is shaping up. The future of electronics might just be in these moiré patterns, you know?

Jake Thompson December 25, 2023 - 4:05 pm

Amazing stuff! really shows the progress in quantum physics Purdue’s team is doing wonders with those van der Waals materials. can’t wait to see where this leads!

Raj Patel December 25, 2023 - 6:45 pm

not sure i get all the technical bits. but it sounds like a big deal? moiré magnetism could be a game changer in tech, i guess.

Linda K. December 25, 2023 - 7:27 pm

wow, just wow! I read about spintronics before, but this is something else. Purdue is really pushing the boundaries.

Mike O'Brien December 25, 2023 - 9:19 pm

gotta say, the article’s a bit heavy on the jargon. But it’s cool seeing how they’re mixing spin and twist, kinda like a sci-fi movie plot, right


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