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Phys Rev Lett. 2002 Jun 3;88(22):227201. Epub 2002 May 16.

All-optical probe of coherent spin waves.

Author information

1
Department of Applied Physics, Center for NanoMaterials and COBRA Research Institute, Eindhoven University of Technology, P.O. Box 513, 5600 MB Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

Abstract

A novel, all-optical method to excite and detect spin waves in magnetic materials is presented. By exploiting the temperature dependence of the magnetic anisotropy, an ultrashort laser pulse is efficiently converted in a picosecond "anisotropy field" pulse that triggers a coherent precession of the magnetization. Recording the temporal evolution of the precessing spins by a time-delayed probe-pulse provides a quantitative method to study locally the magnetic anisotropy, as well as switching and damping phenomena in micromagnetic structures. Applications to nickel and permalloy ( Ni80Fe20) films are discussed, particularly showing the possibility to explore standing spin waves in thin films.

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