Researchers demonstrated an all-electric approach for nanoscale vector magnetic sensing

(Nanowerk News) Researchers from Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST) in China have successfully demonstrated an all-electric approach for nanoscale vector magnetic sensing. Their paper was published in the journal Advanced Electronic Materials ("Nanoscale Vector Magnetic Sensing with Current-Driven Stochastic Nanomagnet").
Detection of vector magnetic fields at nanoscale dimensions is an outstanding problem in fields ranging from fundamental physics and material sciences to practical applications in biological imaging and data storage.
Currently, the most advanced method for measuring nanoscale vector magnetic fields involves utilizing a single nitrogen vacancy (NV) center in diamond and assessing the Zeeman splitting of NV spin qubits using optically-detected magnetic resonance. However, this technique requires complex optical setups and expensive detection systems to detect photoluminescence light, which limits miniaturization and scalability.
Therefore, the development of a nanoscale vector magnetic field sensing technology that operates with a simple and all-electric approach has been a highly sought-after goal in the field of magnetic microsystems.
In their recent study, led by Prof. Long You, the researchers proposed and successfully demonstrated an all-electric approach to sensing nanoscale vector magnetic fields. The key focus of their work was achieving magnetic sensing using a single device with entirely electrical operation.
To achieve magnetic sensing, different from NV-based quantum sensor which is to evaluate the Zeeman splitting of ms=|±1> ground states of NV spin qubit in an optically detected electron spin resonance (ESR) spectrum, they monitor the energy spilt of Mz = ±1 (‘up’ and ‘down’ state) of a classic magnetic bit (spin ensemble), which depends on external magnetic fields through the Zeeman effect, from the detection of state-selective switching probability under spin-orbit torque.
The achieved sensitivities for the x, y, and z components of the magnetic field are 1.02%/Oe, 1.09%/Oe, and 3.43%/Oe, respectively. The magnetic resolution is expected to be comparable to NV-based vector magnetometers.
According to Prof. You, the approach employed in this research is characterized by three key elements. Firstly, it introduces the concept of classical statistics probability into magnetic field sensing. Secondly, it enables all-electrical manipulation of single magnets, enabling the detection of nanoscale vector magnetic fields with high spatial resolution. Lastly, it utilizes conventional magnetic or paramagnetic memory bits as the sensing elements.
Prof. You emphasized that this research highlights the capability of a single device to accurately detect nanoscale 3D magnetic fields using a classical method. He believes that this work provides valuable guidance for the development of commercial applications of nanoscale 3D field sensors
Source: Huazhong University of Science and Technology (Note: Content may be edited for style and length)
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