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Chapter 7

Micromagnetism, domains and hysteresis

7.1 Micromagnetic energy
7.2 Domain theory
7.5 Reversal, pinning and nucleation

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The hysteresis loop

spontaneous magnetization

remanence

coercivity virgin curve
initial susceptibility

major loop

The hysteresis loop shows the irreversible, nonlinear response of a ferromagnet to a
magnetic field . It reflects the arrangement of the magnetization in ferromagnetic domains.
The magnet cannot be in thermodynamic equilibrium anywhere around the open part of
the curve! M and H have the same units (A m-1).
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Domains form to minimize the dipolar energy Ed

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air + 1. The interior is inscruatble. TCD March 2007 5 . solid + M + M( r) ! H( r) BUT H( r) ! M( r) Experimental information about the domain structure comes from observations at the surface.Magnetostatics Poisson’s equarion Volume charge Boundary condition en 2.

1 Micromagnetic energy TCD March 2007 6 .7.

3 nm Exchange energy of vortex $Eex = JS2ln (R/a) TCD March 2007 7 .1 Exchange eM = M( r)/Ms (".#) Exchange length A = kTC/2a A = 2JS2Zc/a0 A ~ 10 pJ m-1 Lex ~ 2 . 1.

1.107 J m-3 Surface Ksa ~ 0.2 Anisotropy EK = K1sin2" Bulk K1 ~ 102 .1 . Interface Kea ~ 1 mJ m-2. Exchange and anisotropy govern the width of the domain wall. TCD March 2007 8 .1 mJ m-2.

%&m TCD March 2007 9 .1.3 Demagnetizing field Demagnetizing field governs the formation of the wall (integral over all space) and B = µ0(H + M) Hd is determined by the volume and surface charge distributions %.M &m = qm/4'r. %2 &m= -(m H = .M and en.

4 Stress Magnetoelastic strain tensor For isotropic material. uniaxial stress Induced uniaxial anisotropy TCD March 2007 10 .1.

but it can influence the formation of closure domains. TCD March 2007 11 .1.5 Magnetosriction Local stresses can be created by the magnetostriction of the ferromagnet itself: Magnetostrictive stress Deviation due to magnetostriction Elastic tensor Usually this term is small < 1 kj m-3 .

wherever possible. and keep charge of like sign as far apart as possible e.6 Charge Avoidance A guide to how nature minimizes the micromagnetic free energy is the charge avoidance principle.g Keep magnetization parallel to the surface. Toroid Picture frame TCD March 2007 12 . Avoid forming bulk or surface chage.1.

Brown’s Micromagnetic equations TCD March 2007 13 .General statement of the micromagnetic problem: No torque on the magnetization at any point.

7.1 Domain Theory A ~ 10-11 J m-1 K1 ~ 10 5 J m-3 TCD March 2007 14 .

2.1 Bloch Wall TCD March 2007 15 .

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1 Néel Wall Neel walls form in thin films of soft material thinner than ~ 6 nm TCD March 2007 17 . 2.

3 Magnetization processes There are two magnetization processes for a ferromagnet: 1) Domain-wall motion 2) Magnetization rotation H’ If the domain walls are perfectly free to move. they will do so until H =0. H’ = 1/N TCD March 2007 18 .2.

3 Nucleation. reversal and pinning TCD March 2007 19 .7.

for a homogeneous. Brown’s paradox Brown’s theorem. uniformly- magnetized ellipse TCD March 2007 20 .

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A very small particle will be single-domain. Larger particles form domain walls to reduce demagnetizing energy Single-domain particle size: Cost of making two 90 degree walls is 2!R2(AK)1/2 should offset the gain in demagnetizing energy -(1/2)NMs2 TCD March 2007 22 .

2 The Stoner Wohlfarth model Assume coherent rotation of the magnetization. H makes an angle ) with the axis of the particle.3. NB R < Rsd does not guarantee coherent rotation. Hc=2Ku/µ0Ms TCD March 2007 23 . When ) = 0.

The energy landscape of a Stoner Wohlfarth particle TCD March 2007 24 .

99 TCD March 2007 25 .5 Area = 0.Hc = 0.479 Mr = 0.

These are known as ‘hysterons’ M H TCD March 2007 26 .Preisach Model Model hysteresis loops with a distribution of elementary square loops.

Other reversal modes TCD March 2007 27 .

never within it. and normalize them by the anisotropy field 2Ku/Ms dEtot/d"=0 TCD March 2007 28 . The reversal The Stoner Wohlfarth asteroid.3 Reversal in thin films and small elements Consider a thin film as a 2D S-W ‘particle’. is assumed to be coherent Locus of points where a bifurcation of energy occurs Switching occurs on the surface.3. Take components of H along easy and hard directions.

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when the soft hemisphere cannot reverse independently. TCD March 2007 31 .4 The two-hemisphere model A sphere made up of two halves with different anisotropy K) and K* Exchange + dipole interactions Anisotropy + Zeeman interactions If K1 = K) and K* = 0.3. Independent reveral of the soft hemisphere occurs when H (1/8) Ms Except if R < lex.

Exchange stiffening operates on a length scale of up to 4lex 10 nm. TCD March 2007 32 .

28 GHz/T when g=2 and + = -e/m In the presence of unixial anisotropy: H Gilbert damping term M TCD March 2007 33 .3.4 Switching dynamics.e. Torque on a magnetic moment in a field causes precession at the Larmor precession frequency i.

5 Domain wall pinning Barkhausen jumps Domain wall velocity.3. TCD March 2007 34 .

3.6 Real hysteresis loops TCD March 2007 35 .

Kronmuller Equation TCD March 2007 36 .

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Approach to saturation TCD March 2007 38 .

Time Dependence Magnetic Viscosity M = M0 . nonlinear response of a ferromagnet to a magnetic field . It reflects the arrangement of the magnetization in ferromagnetic domains. The magnet cannot be in thermodynamic equilibrium anywhere around the open part of the curve! M and H have the same units (A m-1). TCD March 2007 39 .S ln t spontaneous magnetization remanence coercivity virgin curve initial susceptibility major loop The hysteresis loop shows the irreversible.