Recent advancements in 2D materials have revealed the potential of van der Waals magnets, and specifically of their magnetic anisotropy that allows applications down to the 2D limit. Among these materials, CrSBr has emerged as a promising candidate, because its intriguing magnetic and electronic properties have appeal for both fundamental and applied research in spintronics or magnonics. In this work, nano-SQUID-on-tip (SOT) microscopy is used to obtain direct magnetic imaging of CrSBr flakes with thicknesses ranging from monolayer (N = 1) to few-layer (N = 5). The ferromagnetic order is preserved down to the monolayer, while the antiferromagnetic coupling of the layers starts from the bilayer case. For odd layers, at zero applied magnetic field, the stray field resulting from the uncompensated layer is directly imaged. The progressive spin reorientation along the out-of-plane direction (hard axis) is also measured with a finite applied magnetic field, allowing evaluation of the anisotropy constant, which remains stable down to the monolayer and is close to the bulk value. Finally, by selecting the applied magnetic field protocol, the formation of Néel magnetic domain walls is observed down to the single-layer limit.
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© 2023 The Authors. Advanced Materials published by Wiley-VCH GmbH.
- 2D magnetism
- magnetic domains
- scanning SQUID-on-tip microscopy
- van der Waals antiferromagnets