Hennecke, M.; Radu, I.; Abrudan, R.; Kachel, T.; Holldack, K.; Mitzner, R.; Tsukamoto, A.; Eisebitt, S.: Angular Momentum Flow During Ultrafast Demagnetization of a Ferrimagnet. Physical Review Letters 122 (2019), p. 157202/1-5
Open Accesn Version

One of the key processes setting the speed of the ultrafast magnetization phenomena is the angular momentum transfer from and into the spin system. However, the way the angular momentum flows during ultrafast demagnetization and magnetization switching phenomena remains elusive so far. We report on time-resolved soft x-ray magnetic circular dichroism measurements of the ferrimagnetic GdFeCo alloy allowing us to record the dynamics of elemental spin and orbital moments at the Fe and Gd sites during femtosecond laser-induced demagnetization. We observe a complete transfer of spin and orbital angular momentum to the lattice during the first hundreds of femtoseconds of the demagnetization process.