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Persistent dynamic magnetic state in artificial honeycomb spin ice...

Publication Type
Journal Name
Nature Communications
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Topological magnetic charges, arising due to the non-vanishing magnetic flux on spin ice vertices, serve as the origin of magnetic monopoles that traverse the underlying lattice effortlessly. Unlike spin ice materials of atomic origin, the dynamic state in artificial honeycomb spin ice is conventionally described in terms of finite size domain wall kinetics that require magnetic field or current application. Contrary to this common understanding, here we show that a thermally tunable artificial permalloy honeycomb lattice exhibits a perpetual dynamic state due to self-propelled magnetic charge defect relaxation in the absence of any external tuning agent. Quantitative investigation of magnetic charge defect dynamics using neutron spin echo spectroscopy reveals sub-ns relaxation times that are comparable to the relaxation of monopoles in bulk spin ices. Most importantly, the kinetic process remains unabated at low temperature where thermal fluctuation is negligible. This suggests that dynamic phenomena in honeycomb spin ice are mediated by quasi-particle type entities, also confirmed by dynamic Monte-Carlo simulations that replicate the kinetic behavior. Our research unveils a macroscopic magnetic particle that shares many known traits of quantum particles, namely magnetic monopole and magnon.