Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics

Temperature gradient-induced magnetization reversal of single ferromagnetic nanowires

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In this study, we investigate the temperature- and temperature gradient-dependent magnetization reversal process of individual, single-domain Co39Ni61 and Fe15Ni85 ferromagnetic nanowires via the magneto-optical Kerr effect and magnetoresistance measurements. While the coercive fields (HC) and therefore the magnetic switching fields (HSW) generally decrease under isothermal conditions at elevated base temperatures (Tbase), temperature gradients (ΔT) along the nanowires lead to an increased switching field of up to 15% for ΔT = 300 K in Co39Ni61 nanowires. This enhancement is attributed to a stress-induced, magneto-elastic anisotropy term due to an applied temperature gradient along the nanowire that counteracts the thermally assisted magnetization reversal process. Our results demonstrate that a careful distinction between locally elevated temperatures and temperature gradients has to be made in future heat-assisted magnetic recording devices.