Moving Barkhausen Effect forward

Jan 17, 2013

Almost 100 years after the initial discovery, a team of scientists at the University of Alberta and the National Institute for Nanotechnology in Edmonton have harnessed the Barkhausen Effect as a new kind of high-resolution microscopy for the insides of magnetic materials.

The researchers say the technique has the potential to provide critical information as a rapid prototyper for magnetic computational devices that expand the role of magnetism within computers.

In 1919, Barkhausen discovered the first evidence of (patterns in how the directions of magnetism are organized, which occur inside all ). This marked a milestone in the development of the modern understanding of magnetism.

The Alberta researchers measure the Barkhausen jumps of magnetization for a special 'vortex' pattern, which is scanned around the inside of their sample by the application of magnetic fields.

Analysis of the jumps converts the vortex pattern into a probe of on the scale of billionths of a metre. The analysis was made possible by a model describing the 'stick-slip nature of the jumps; an effect describable previously only in complex .

U of A graduate students Jacob Burgess and Alastair Fraser, from the physics group of of professor Mark Freeman, were co-lead authors of the research paper, appearing in the journal Science, online Jan. 17.

Explore further: Could 'Jedi Putter' be the force golfers need?

Related Stories

Physicists discover 'magnetotoroidic effect'

Sep 26, 2011

(PhysOrg.com) -- For many years, scientists have known about the magnetoelectric effect, in which an electric field can induce and control a magnetic field, and vice versa. In this effect, the electric field has always been ...

Unfazed by imperfections

Jul 08, 2011

While insulating against electrical currents in their interior, the surface of materials called topological insulators permits the flow of electron spins relatively unhindered. The almost lossless flow ...

Recommended for you

Could 'Jedi Putter' be the force golfers need?

Apr 18, 2014

Putting is arguably the most important skill in golf; in fact, it's been described as a game within a game. Now a team of Rice engineering students has devised a training putter that offers golfers audio, ...

Better thermal-imaging lens from waste sulfur

Apr 17, 2014

Sulfur left over from refining fossil fuels can be transformed into cheap, lightweight, plastic lenses for infrared devices, including night-vision goggles, a University of Arizona-led international team ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

Egypt archaeologists find ancient writer's tomb

Egypt's minister of antiquities says a team of Spanish archaeologists has discovered two tombs in the southern part of the country, one of them belonging to a writer and containing a trove of artifacts including reed pens ...