Skyrmions are localized magnetic spin textures whose stability has been shown theoretically to depend on material parameters including bulk Dresselhaus spin orbit coupling (SOC), interfacial Rashba SOC, and magnetic anisotropy. Here, we establish the growth of a new class of artificial skyrmion materials, namely B20 superlattices, where these parameters could be systematically tuned. Specifically, we report the successful growth of B20 superlattices comprised of single crystal thin films of FeGe, MnGe, and CrGe on Si(1 1 1) substrates. Thin films and superlattices are grown by molecular beam epitaxy and are characterized through a combination of reflection high energy electron diffraction, X-ray diffraction, and cross-sectional scanning transmission electron microscopy (STEM). X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy (XEDS) distinguishes layers by elemental mapping and indicates good interface quality with relatively low levels of intermixing in the [CrGe/MnGe/FeGe] superlattice. This demonstration of epitaxial, single-crystalline B20 superlattices is a significant advance toward tunable skyrmion systems for fundamental scientific studies and applications in magnetic storage and logic.
- A.1. Crystal structure
- A.1. Reflection high-energy electron diffraction
- A.3. Molecular beam epitaxy
- A.3. Superlattices
- B.2. Magnetic materials