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Pump–probe x-ray microscopy of photo-induced magnetization dynamics at MHz repetition rates

Gerlinger, Kathinka; Pfau, Bastian; Hennecke, Martin; Kern, Lisa-Marie; Will, Ingo; Noll, Tino; Weigand, Markus; Gräfe, Joachim; Träger, Nick; Schneider, Michael; Günther, Christian M.; Engel, Dieter; Schütz, Gisela; Eisebitt, Stefan

We present time-resolved scanning x-ray microscopy measurements with picosecond photo-excitation via a tailored infrared pump laser at a scanning transmission x-ray microscope. Specifically, we image the laser-induced demagnetization and remagnetization of thin ferrimagnetic GdFe films proceeding on a few nanoseconds timescale. Controlling the heat load on the sample via additional reflector and heatsink layers allows us to conduct destruction-free measurements at a repetition rate of 50 MHz. Near-field enhancement of the photo-excitation and controlled annealing effects lead to laterally heterogeneous magnetization dynamics which we trace with 30 nm spatial resolution. Our work opens new opportunities to study photo-induced dynamics on the nanometer scale, with access to picosecond to nanosecond time scales, which is of technological relevance, especially in the field of magnetism.
Published in: Structural Dynamics, 10.1063/4.0000167, American Institute of Physics