Fluctuation-induced Néel and Bloch skyrmions at topological insulator surfaces

Nogueira, F.S. and Eremin, I. and Katmis, F. and Moodera, J.S. and Van Den Brink, J. and Kravchuk, V.P.

Volume: 98 Pages:
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevB.98.060401
Published: 2018

Ferromagnets in contact with a topological insulator have become appealing candidates for spintronics due to the presence of Dirac surface states with spin-momentum locking. Because of this, bilayer Bi2Se3-EuS structures, for instance, show a finite magnetization at the interface at temperatures well exceeding the Curie temperature of bulk EuS. Here, we determine theoretically the effective magnetic interactions at a topological insulator-ferromagnet interface above the magnetic ordering temperature. We show that by integrating out the Dirac fermion fluctuations an effective Dzyaloshinskii-Moriya interaction and magnetic charging interaction emerge. As a result, individual magnetic skyrmions and extended skyrmion lattices can form at the interfaces of ferromagnets and topological insulators, the first indications of which have been very recently observed experimentally. © 2018 American Physical Society.

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