The World Materials Forum 2021 was held 17-19 June. One output was highlighting ten emerging technologies foreseen to reach industrial scale by 2030, that can best contribute to decouple economic growth from the current use of our natural resources. Spintronics is one of them, identified for its prospects to lower the power consumption of data storage and usage.
The World Materials Forum is a yearly gathering, focusing on the latest developments and prospects of materials, and their contribution to innovation and progress of the society. The 2021 edition took place in Nancy from 17 to 19th June, with this year the specific topic: Green Technologies and Materials: the Convergence.
A cornerstone of the forum was the design and delivery of a report of what is considered the top-10 most promising technologies to reach industrial scale by 2030, and contributing to a greener world. Spintronics was highlighted as one of them, for its potential and maturity to address the fast-rising energy consumption due to data storage and processing, which increases exponentially because of our increasingly connected society with big data and Artificial Intelligence. Andrew Kent (NY, USA), Dafiné Ravelosona (Orsay, France), Weisheng Zhao (Beihang, China) and Hideo Ohno (Tohoku, Japan) jointly contributed to the case of spintronics, putting forward the ideal conjunction of MRAM maturity, proven compatibility with the semiconductor industry, and emergence of future generations for even lower power consumption.
This recognition is a cornerstone for the research and R&D community i all fields of magnetism. The key role of spintronics foreseen in tomorrow's technologies brings a practical motivation for research scientists, promises enhanced support from public and private research programs, and is liable for a better visibility and attractiveness from the broad public and higher-education student. This rising recognition is also visible in the list of the first calls announced by Europe in the Horizon Europe program (FP9), explicitly and sometimes specifically targeting spintronics. The EMA and its associated body SpinTronicFactory (STF) played an active role in promoting these new programs.
Thankfully, this recognition shall provide a a similar driving force to that induced by hard-disk-drive data storage when in its golden age, which had been fueling research, funding and broad interest for decades.