Quantum Magnetism pp 35-48
Halfvortices in Flat Nanomagnets
- Cite this paper as:
- Chern GW., Clarke D., Youk H., Tchernyshyov O. (2008) Halfvortices in Flat Nanomagnets. In: Barbara B., Imry Y., Sawatzky G., Stamp P.C.E. (eds) Quantum Magnetism. NATO Science for Peace and Security Series (Series B: Physics and Biophysics). Springer, Dordrecht
We discuss a new type of topological defect in XY systems for which the O (2) symmetry is broken in the presence of a boundary. Of particular interest is the appearance of such defects in nanomagnets with a planar geometry. They are manifested as kinks of magnetization along the edge and can be viewed as halfvortices with winding numbers ±1/2. We argue that the halfvortices play a role in flat nanomagnetics equally important to that of ordinary bulk vortices. We show that domain walls found in experiments and numerical simulations in strips and rings are composite objects containing two or more elementary defects. We also discuss a closely related system: the two-dimensional smectic liquid crystal films with planar boundary condition.
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