Concepts in Spintronics

Coordinators: Leon Balents, Gerrit Bauer, Allan MacDonald, Yaroslav Tserkovnyak

Scientific Advisors: Stuart Parkin

Spintronics has developed rapidly over the past few years, spawning new topics and encompassing a great variety of materials and devices, based on metals, semiconductors, superconductors, and even insulators. A growing family of microscopic degrees of freedom are known to act in concert in some of the most fascinating spintronic phenomena. The collective behavior emerging out of electronic, microwave, optical, mechanical, and nuclear building blocks of solid-state excitations, which can all carry angular momentum and energy, is fueling excitement in the field.

The conference "Concepts in Spintronics" will kick off the 12-week long KITP Program "Spintronics: Progress in Theory, Materials, and Devices." We plan for a strong representation of experimentalists at the Conference who will be given the opportunity to help shaping the issues to be addressed by theorists during the main Program. The goal of these associated events is to provide a sweeping view of the field and focus theoretical efforts on the key problems. Specifically, the topics to be addressed by the conference as well as the long program will include:

  • Spin transport in the presence of strong spin-orbit and electron-electron interactions; low-dimensional helical spin systems; magnetic/superconducting heterostructures; proximity effects
  • Geometric gauge fields in ferromagnets, antiferromagnets, and strained pseudospin systems; topological spin textures and their dynamics reciprocally coupled to charge fluxes
  • Spin caloritronics: spin Seebeck/Peltier effects, thermal Hall effects, and thermal spin transfer
  • Collective low-dissipation spin dynamics and propagation in magnetic insulators; magnon spin transfer and pumping; voltage control in the absence of Ohmic losses
  • Macroscopic quantum behavior of nanomagnets; magnets interfaced with superconductors and NEMS; propagation of spin-based quantum information
  • Stochastic and nonlinear phenomena in strongly-driven magnetic systems; laser-induced collective spin dynamics; spin-selective optic excitations; nuclear spin dynamics and decoherence