Abstract

We have developed a magneto-optical Kerr microscope that allows us to measure the ultrafast magnetization dynamics of ferromagnetic nanostructures. The magneto-optical signal can be recorded in a confocal reflection geometry with an accurate selection of the polarization. The magnetization dynamics is obtained from pump–probe measurements using frequency nondegenerate collinear pump and probe beams with a temporal resolution of 180fs. Both probe and pump beams are focused to their diffraction limit, leading to an overall spatial resolution of 600nm. The efficiency of the apparatus is tested by investigating the magnetization dynamics of individual CoPt3 disks with a submicrometer diameter and a thickness of 15nm.

© 2007 Optical Society of America

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