Low frequency terahertz-induced demagnetization in ferromagnetic nickel
A laser stimulus at terahertz (THz) frequency is expected to offer superior control over magnetization dynamics compared to an optical pulse, where ultrafast demagnetization is mediated by heat deposition. As a THz field cycle occurs on a timescale similar to the natural speed of spin motions, this can open a path for triggering precessional magnetization motion and ultimately ultrafast magnetic switching by the THz magnetic field component, without quenching. Here, we explore the ultrafast magnetic response of a ferromagnetic nickel thin film excited by a strong (33MV/cm) terahertz transient in non-resonant conditions. While the magnetic laser pulse component induces ultrafast magnetic precessions, we experimentally found that at high pump fluence, the THz pulse leads to large quenching which dominates the precessional motion by far. Furthermore, degradation of magnetic properties sets in and leads to permanent modifications of the Ni thin film and damage. Published by AIP Publishing.