Time-Resolved Magneto-Optical Kerr Effect of Magnetic Thin Films for Ultrafast Thermal Characterization

Jun Yang Chen, Jie Zhu, Delin Zhang, Dustin M. Lattery, Mo Li, Jian Ping Wang, Xiaojia Wang

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31 Scopus citations


Thermomagnetic and magneto-optical effects are two fundamental but unique phenomena existing in magnetic materials. In this work, we demonstrate ultrafast time-resolved magneto-optical Kerr effect (TR-MOKE) as an advanced thermal characterization technique by studying the original factors of the MOKE signal from four magnetic transducers, including TbFe, GdFeCo, Co/Pd, and CoFe/Pt. A figure of merit is proposed to evaluate the performance of the transducer layers, corresponding to the degree of the signal-to-noise ratio in TR-MOKE measurements. We observe improved figure of merit for rare-earth transition-metal-based TbFe and GdFeCo transducers and attribute this improvement to their relatively larger temperature-dependent magnetization and the Kerr rotation angle at the saturated magnetization state. Furthermore, an optimal thickness of TbFe is found to be ∼18.5 nm to give the best performance. Our findings will facilitate the nanoscale thermal characterization and the device design where the thermo-magneto-optical coupling plays an important role.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2328-2332
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry Letters
Issue number13
StatePublished - Jul 7 2016

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© 2016 American Chemical Society.

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