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Skyrmion knots in frustrated magnets

Sutcliffe, Paul

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A magnetic Skyrmion is a stable two-dimensional nanoparticle describing a localized winding of the magnetization in certain magnetic materials. Skyrmions are the subject of intense experimental and theoretical investigation and have potential technological spintronic applications. Here we show that numerical computations of frustrated magnets predict that Skyrmions can be tied into knots to form new stable three-dimensional nanoparticles. These stable equilibria of twisted loops of Skyrmion strings have an integer-valued topological charge, known as the Hopf charge, that counts the number of particles. Rings are formed for low values of this charge, but for higher values it is energetically favorable to form links and then knots. This computational study provides a novel impetus for future experimental work on these nanoknots and an exploration of the potential technological applications of three-dimensional nanoparticles encoding knotted magnetization.


Sutcliffe, P. (2017). Skyrmion knots in frustrated magnets. Physical Review Letters, 118(24), Article 247203.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 26, 2017
Online Publication Date Jun 16, 2017
Publication Date Jun 16, 2017
Deposit Date Jun 26, 2017
Publicly Available Date Jun 26, 2017
Journal Physical Review Letters
Print ISSN 0031-9007
Electronic ISSN 1079-7114
Publisher American Physical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 118
Issue 24
Article Number 247203
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Published Journal Article (1 Mb)

Copyright Statement
Reprinted with permission from the American Physical Society: Physical Review Letters 118, 247203 © 2017 by the American Physical Society. Readers may view, browse, and/or download material for temporary copying purposes only, provided these uses are for noncommercial personal purposes. Except as provided by law, this material may not be further reproduced, distributed, transmitted, modified, adapted, performed, displayed, published, or sold in whole or part, without prior written permission from the American Physical Society.

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