Spin waves transport information in the form of intrinsic angular momentum into magnetic materials. The quasi-particles of these waves are magnons. Compared with electrons, they can transmit much more information, yet they use much less energy and generate less waste heat.
First described by Qi Wang and colleagues, the integrated magnon circuit uses the following phenomenon: When two magnon conductors are placed extremely closely together, the energy of the waves will be transferred from one conductor to the next. This yields a new wiring method suitable for junctions without any three-dimensional bridge construction. The researchers refer to the connection point as a directional coupler. In future computer components, this will allow cost and material savings. In addition, the size of the simulated components is within the nanometer regime, which is comparable to modern chips. However, the information density using magnons is significantly greater.
The complete research report "Reconfigurable nanoscale spin-wave directional coupler" is available as full text in Open Access from Science Advances .