Till startsida
Sitemap
To content Read more about how we use cookies on gu.se

Magnetic discovery paves the way for molecular memories

News: Nov 25, 2019

Cover of the magazine Materials Horizons

Illustration: Viktar Asadchy.

As more and more information gets stored in the cloud, the huge demand for data storage facilities grows even bigger. Break-throughs from the University of Gothenburg with other European partners could dramatically improve capacity of digital memories.

For decades, the ultimate magnetic memory was envisioned as a single magnetic atom, able to be assembled into futuristic memory chips.

“There is huge appeal in using single atoms as memory bits, and it’s fundamentally proven possible. However, at room temperature, the atoms move too much and it’s difficult to put a single one in place. Organic molecules can be used to ‘stitch’ everything together and potentially form arrays of single magnetic atoms that are reasonably stable,” says Professor Alexandre Dmitriev.

Before using molecules as memory units, it’s necessary to improve how they are detected, which has now been done through the EU Femtoterabyte project, helmed by scientists from the University of Gothenburg.

The fundamental problem of handling such small magnetic memory units is that it is extremely hard to detect a magnetic signal from them, which would be necessary for reading the stored information. Traditionally, it takes huge, kilometer-sized machines called x-ray synchrotrons for doing that, as only such machines provide the needed magnetic sensitivity.

Worked out a simplified method

Now the situation has changed. According to the consortium of researchers from the University of Gothenburg, Scientists Evgeniya Smetanina, Alexandre Dmitriev and Esteban PedruesaUniversity of Pisa and the University of Florence, whose work has recently been published as a cover story in the prestigious journal Materials Horizons it is now possible to work with and detect single-molecule magnets in a conventional lab, using a commonly available equipment.

The new, simplified method is enhanced by optical antennas and uses the so-called magnetic circular dichroism, where the right- and left-circularly-polarized light is absorbed differently by the magnetized single-molecule-magnets.

“Our results provide a tool to everyone in the world working in this field that will let them characterize magnetic properties without the need of large experimental facilities. In the long term, the dream is to actually use such systems in ‘molecular memory’ or, alternatively, in molecular-based quantum computing,” says Alexandre Dmitriev.

The findings are not only a great advancement on the road to single-atom magnetic memories, but a testament to the importance of bridging the gaps between separate fields in physics.

"The beauty of combining different fields – in this case molecular magnetism and nano-optics – is that something substantial for both fields can emerge,” says Alexandre Dmitriev.

Text: Carolina Svensson

Link>> 

Contact: Alexandre Dmitriev, alexd@physics.gu.se ,0708-423819

Illustration: Viktar Asadchy, Department of Electrical Engineering, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305, USA.
Photo: Evgeniya Smetanina, Alexandre Dmitriev and Esteban Pedruesa.
 

 

BY:

News

  • AI agents can learn to communicate effectively

    [15 Jul 2020] A multi-disciplinary team of researchers from Chalmers and University of Gothenburg has developed a framework to study how language evolves as an effective tool for describing mental concepts. In a new paper, they show that artificial agents can learn how to communicate in an artificial language similar to human language. The results have been published in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.

  • Medicine against prostate cancer in new COVID-19 study

    [15 Jul 2020] In a new trial, Swedish researchers will investigate if a medicine normally used to treat prostate cancer can also be used to treat COVID-19 in patients. The desired effect is that the medicine will shorten the course of the disease and the need for intensive care. The drug itself is known to not least affect an enzyme important in prostate cancer cases and in corona infections.

  • Better hip replacements when surgeon operates often

    [14 Jul 2020] The higher the proportion of primary hip replacement operations a surgeon performs annually, the better the results are, a thesis at the University of Gothenburg shows. On the other hand, it makes little difference to the patient whether the operating surgeon is a fully trained specialist in orthopedics or a resident physician being trained as an orthopedic specialist.

  • An ambitious climate policy is economically beneficial

    [13 Jul 2020] An economically optimal climate policy is in line with the Paris Agreement's 2-degree temperature target. This is according to a new study involving the University of Gothenburg, Chalmers University of Technology and others. The study updates the cost/benefit analyses of climate measures made by Economics Laureate William Nordhaus.

  • Gut microbiota provide clues for treating diabetes

    [13 Jul 2020] The individual mix of microorganisms in the human gastrointestinal tract provides vital clues as to how any future incidence of type 2 diabetes can be predicted, prevented and treated. This is demonstrated in a population study led from the University of Gothenburg.

More news

Page Manager: Webbredaktionen|Last update: 7/13/2012
Share:

The University of Gothenburg uses cookies to provide you with the best possible user experience. By continuing on this website, you approve of our use of cookies.  What are cookies?