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Research Highlight | Materials Science Division

Mechanically driven spins in SiC with sound

In a study published in Nature Physics, researchers demonstrate mechanically driven Autler–Townes splittings and magnetically forbidden Rabi oscillations. These results offer a basis for full strain control of three-level spin systems.

Scientific Achievement

Using Gaussian surface acoustic waves to mechanically control the ground state spin of an ensemble of divacancy defects in 4H-SiC.

Significance and Impact

Demonstrate all-optical detection of acoustic paramagnetic resonance and mechanical control of magnetically forbidden transitions for full strain control of a three-level system.

Research Details

  • Observation of Autler-Townes splitting including spatial map of transverse Gaussian profile.
  • Mechanically driven Rabi oscillations of three-level system including control of magnetically forbidden transitions.
  • More complete theoretical understanding of spin/strain coupling, including complex strain/shear interplay.

Work was performed in part at the Center for Nanoscale Materials and Advanced Photon Source.

DOI: https://​doi​.org/​10​.​1038​/​s​41567​-​019​-​0420-0

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About Argonne’s Center for Nanoscale Materials
The Center for Nanoscale Materials is one of the five DOE Nanoscale Science Research Centers, premier national user facilities for interdisciplinary research at the nanoscale supported by the DOE Office of Science. Together the NSRCs comprise a suite of complementary facilities that provide researchers with state-of-the-art capabilities to fabricate, process, characterize and model nanoscale materials, and constitute the largest infrastructure investment of the National Nanotechnology Initiative. The NSRCs are located at DOE’s Argonne, Brookhaven, Lawrence Berkeley, Oak Ridge, Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories. For more information about the DOE NSRCs, please visit https://​sci​ence​.osti​.gov/​U​s​e​r​-​F​a​c​i​l​i​t​i​e​s​/​U​s​e​r​-​F​a​c​i​l​i​t​i​e​s​-​a​t​-​a​-​G​lance.

About the Advanced Photon Source
This research used resources of the Advanced Photon Source, a U.S. DOE Office of Science User Facility operated for the DOE Office of Science by Argonne National Laboratory under Contract No. DE-AC02-06CH11357.

Argonne National Laboratory seeks solutions to pressing national problems in science and technology. The nation’s first national laboratory, Argonne conducts leading-edge basic and applied scientific research in virtually every scientific discipline. Argonne researchers work closely with researchers from hundreds of companies, universities, and federal, state and municipal agencies to help them solve their specific problems, advance America’s scientific leadership and prepare the nation for a better future. With employees from more than 60 nations, Argonne is managed by UChicago Argonne, LLC for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://​ener​gy​.gov/​s​c​ience.