The INSPIRE group took part in the open doors day of Johannes Gutenberg Universität Mainz by inviting secondary school students to dip a toe in the water of theoretical Spintronics. Karin Everschor and Jacob Gayles gave our guests a presentation entitled "The future technology of Spintronics – the diverse quantum world of condensed matter" introducing spintronics as a scientific discipline and giving the students a lively insight into the life and work of researchers in this field. After the theoretical part, Andreas Kehlberger from the Kläui Lab took the potential junior researchers on a tour of the laboratories of the experimentalists. We were very happy about the interest shown by the students and are looking forward to host the next collaborative open doors day of the Kläui Lab and INSPIRE/SPICE.
On December 14th, the SPICE team and INSPIRE group had their Christmas party at the cosy tavern "Beichtstuhl" in the Mainz old town. In a cheerful atmosphere, the group members and their plus ones enjoyed the traditional food and wine of the region, looking back at an eventful year 2015 for both the INSPIRE group and the SPICE Center.
On the December 03rd and 4th, the SPICE team and Inspire group had an internal group seminar in the picturesque city of Bamberg in Franconia. Under the title “New Directions in the Spin Phenomena," the participants explored innovative approaches to interdisciplinary in Spintronics Research. After a nice train journey through the Bavarian landscape, SPICE-Director Jairo Sinova opened the seminar in the beautiful Barock Hotel close to the Bamberg cathedral. In the afternoon, the group had a guided tour through the old part of town followed by a visit of the famous Bamberg Christmas Market. After some Glühwein the group enjoyed traditional Bavarian food in the nice atmosphere of a quaint old town restaurant. Friday started with two workshops – one for the administrative staff led by SPICE project manager Valerie Rung and one for the scientific staff managed by our visiting postdoc Kei Yamamoto. We thank the participants for two beautiful and successful days in Bamberg.
At the meeting of the DFG senate, the new collaborative research centre (Sonderforschungsbereich - SFB) on spin phenomena (Spin+X) was approved. The Sinova Group takes part in this large scale project which unites the 30 leading groups in spintronics and spin - related research from Physics, Chemistry and Engineering at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz and the TU Kaiserslautern. The project is initially funded with 12 Mio. Euros for 4 years and can be extended up to 12 years.
We have the pleasure to host Maria Isabel Alomar Bennassar from the University of the Balearic Islands as our guest. Maria Isabel has been studying transport in graphene with spin orbit coupling and is currently working on her doctoral thesis on thermoelectric transport in spintronic systems. She received a mobility scholarship for scientists from "La Caixa" which she is using to visit SPICE for a five weeks scientific stay and collaborate with the INSPIRE group.
On October 23rd and 24th, SPICE hosted the 29th REIMEI and ERATO-SQR workshop. The organisers Junichi Ieda and Jairo Sinova brought together leading theorists and experimentalists to work on effects of the spin-orbit interaction and the coupling of the spin and lattice degrees of freedom in magnetic nanostructures.
Being an efficient spin current detector and generating so-called spin-orbit torques on proximity magnets, the spin Hall effect has moved into the mainstream of magnetism. The electrical and thermal actuation of the magnetization of insulators with extremely high quality factors of the magnetization dynamics has focused attention on the bosonic degrees of freedom in spintronics and the importance of the spin-lattice and spin-rotation couplings.
The scope of the workshop covered the topics:
The magnon-phonon interaction in a magnetic insulator (YIG) to better understand acoustically induced spin pumping and the spin Seebeck effect.
Materials with large spin-orbit interaction examined by combining density functional theory in the local density approximation with the quantum Monte Carlo technique.
The effects of spin-orbit interaction on the magnetization dynamics of ferro-, feri-, and antiferro-magnets and their heterostructures.
Thanks to an initiative of Denise and the help of our universally talented student assistant and Bavaria enthusiast Alex, SPICE and the INSPIRE group hosted their own Oktoberfest and likely the first Oktoberfest in the history of Spintronics. From the traditional Oktoberfest-Bier, an especially tasty brew that is only available during the Oktoberfest season to the appropriate Bavarian music and Weißwurst (white sausage), all the essentials had been organised. Thus it is not surprising that, even if neither binge drinking nor any dancing on the tables were observed (as customary at the original event), it was a great party. In the midst of a public which was just as international as the one in Munich, our guest Barry Zink had the opportunity to experience some German local colour.
On September 29th we had the pleasure to welcome Barry Zink from the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Denver. He is an expert on micro- and nanofabrication techniques used to control and measure the thermal, magnetic and electronic properties of systems in order to study the fundamental physics of new materials. We thank Barry for an inspiring day of scientific exchange and a very interesting talk on Thermal Spin Injection in Non-Local Spin Valves, Spin Transport in Native FM-Oxides, and Large Spin Hall Angle in Gold Thin Films.
From September 14 to September 15, our workshop on spin transport and spin pumping in organics took place at Schloß Waltdhausen. The workshop brought together scientists from the fields of spintronics and organics to explore possible synergies. It focussed on understanding and manipulating spin and charge transport through pi-conjugated polymers and exploiting its many possibilities. The workshop is closely linked to the focus of the recent ERC Synergy grant “Spin-charge conversion and spin caloritronics at hybrid organic-inorganic interfaces”.
Its program covered topics in organics (synthesis, charge transport, etc), the current status of organic spintronics, inorganic based spintronics. It included presentations of the latest results as well as some tutorial like talks.
INSPIRE and the Kläui Lab are now having monthly meetings to intensify the exchange between the theorists and experimentalists of the institute bringing together the two perspectives on nanoelectronic phenomena in order to generate synergies and facilitate intensified future collaborations.
The talks that were held at this month's joint meeting of the INSPIRE Group and the Kläui Lab were:
Kai Litzius: Progress and Problems – Skyrmions and their Dynamics in Thin Magnetic Layers
Jacob Gailes: Ab-initio calculations of the Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction and transport in