The 2016 Annual Conference on Magnetism and Magnetic Materials (MMM) was held at the New Orleans Marriott Hotel in New Orleans, Louisiana, from October 31 through November 4, starting a new chapter into the 7th decade of this conference. The conference featured latest developments in fundamental and applied magnetism, and was co-sponsored by AIP Publishing and the IEEE Magnetics Society. It drew 2,149 submissions from 50 countries, including 48% from Asia, 27% from America, and 24% from Europe. The final technical program included about 900 oral presentations and 800 poster presentations. The conference was attended by 1,518 registrants, including over 500 students. These attendees were drawn from an extraordinary range of countries, around 39% coming from America, 36% from Asia, and 24% from Europe. The abstract submissions were distributed across 12 sorting categories, with spintronics and magnetization dynamics being the most popular, closely followed by sensors, structured magnetic materials, and magnetoelectronic materials and phenomena. The contributed program was complemented by 8 symposia and 47 individual invited presentations, selected by the Program Committee from 23 and 138 nominations, respectively. These suggestions for symposia and speakers were received from a broad spectrum of the MMM community. The symposia focused on spin transport in antiferromagnets, topological insulator / ferromagnet heterostructures, nitrogen-vacancy center magnetometry, Terahertz spintronics, voltage-controlled magnetism, superconducting spintronics, ultralow damping, and all-optical switching.

Accompanying the main program of presentations were a number of additional events. Continuing the conference tradition, a tutorial was organized for the opening afternoon on Topology in Magnetism, chaired by Stéphane Mangin of University of Lorraine. It was a fitting and timely tribute to the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physics, awarded to Profs. David J. Thouless, F. Duncan M. Haldane, and J. Michael Kosterlitz for their pioneering work on topological phase transitions and topological phases of matter. Ashvin Vishvanath (Harvard University), André Thiaville (Université Paris-Sud), and Christos Panagopoulos (Nanyang Technological University) delivered illuminating talks covering theoretical and experimental perspectives on topology in magnetism, from fundamental physics to device applications. This was followed by a special Wednesday evening session on Neuromorphic Computing, chaired by Peter Fischer of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. After an inspiring overview and perspective by Ivan K. Schuller (University of California - San Diego), Tetsuo Endoh (Tohoku University) discussed exciting progresses in brain-inspired very-large-scale integration (VLSI), and Julie Grollier (Unité Mixte CNRS/Thales) presented beautiful work using spintronic nanodevices as hardware for neuromorphic computing. The regular technical program was also accompanied by exhibits from 24 companies and organizations. A number of programs were specifically tailored for our increasing number of student attendees, including an inaugural Student Networking reception, a student “Meet the Experts” event, and 30 student travel grants. The Best Student Presentation award was sponsored by APS-GMAG and presented by GMAG chair Suzanne te Velthuis (Argonne National Laboratory). Congratulations to the winner, Jamileh Beik Mohammadi (University of Alabama), and other finalists, Jeffrey Brock, Simon Couture, Arsham Ghasemi, Matthew Riou, and Pankaj Sethi. Best Poster awards were organized and presented by Program Co-Chairs Chih-Huang Lai, Stéphane Mangin and Peter Fischer. Child-care support was awarded to 11 applicants to facilitate their participation in the conference. The conference also featured a number of social events. A welcome reception was held on Tuesday night, aboard the jazz-playing Natchez and Creole Queen Riverboats, after a memorable police-escorted parade that shut down the busy Canal Street briefly. Other programs included a Women in Magnetism event, continuation of a well-received Young Professionals Networking event (thanks to Ikenna Nlebedim), and the ever-popular evening bierstubes.

The real purpose of this preface, of course, is to introduce the technical papers resulting from the 61st MMM. These amount to 379 papers in this issue of the AIP Advances. These papers, and the rich program described above, result from the efforts of a large team of people who tirelessly volunteered their time to serve the MMM Conference. It is not possible to thank all of these individuals, but I would like to thank, on behalf of the 61st MMM, a number of people who made critical contributions. Primary among these are the three Program Chairs, Peter Fischer (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), Stéphane Mangin (University of Lorraine), and Chih-Huang Lai (National Tsing Hua University). This team dealt superbly with the large number of submissions, presiding over a Program Committee of 79 members, carefully selected to represent the geographical, gender, and technical diversity of the conference. The Program Committee handled this large workload with flying colors, each submitted abstract being subject to a rigorous review process. They defined the conference with an exciting technical program. These, and all other aspects of the conference, are of course impossible without financial oversight. This was ably provided by the Conference Treasurers June W. Lau (National Institute of Standards and Technology) and Maria Varela (Universidad Complutense de Madrid) who diligently ensured the financial health of the conference and responded efficiently to every demand. Thanks are also due to Publications Chair Minn-Tsong Lin (National Taiwan University), who, along with his team of editors (Farkhad Aliev, Victorino Franco, Olle Heinonen, Ron Jansen, Shang-Fan Lee, Connie Li, Seiji Mitani, Marek Przybylski, and Di Wu) oversaw the entire review and publication process under very tight schedules. They are gratefully acknowledged, along with the authors of course, for the contents of this issue of AIP Advances. We are also very grateful to the staff at AIP Publishing, particularly Melissa Patterson, Eric Mills, Diana Schlamadinger, and Vincent Crespi, Editor of AIP Advances, as well as Christine Urso from Origin Editorial, for their help with the manuscript review and publication. The success of the aforementioned exhibits would not have been possible without the remarkable efforts of Exhibits Chair Mingzhong Wu (Colorado State University), along with Exhibits Manager Jennifer Fiske. The conference is also indebted to Barry Zink (University of Denver), the Student Awards and Travel Chair, who tirelessly oversaw the student presentation awards, travel awards, and child care grants. Last but not least, Brian Maranville (National Institute of Standards and Technology) and Daniel Lottis (Western Digital) served the conference as Publicity Chair and the inaugural Social Media Coordinator, respectively. Brian was responsible, in particular, for the original design of the conference logo, composing the MMM style jazz with spin triplets and fleur-de-lis, as well as other promotional materials. Daniel coordinated the conference announcements and promotions on Facebook and Twitter, which was highly effective in instantaneous dissemination of information both before and during the conference. We have also benefited tremendously from the experience and wisdom of Past Chair Bruce Gurney, Chair-Elect Pallavi Dhagat, and sponsor representatives Bill Burke and Randall Victora. These people, along with the conference management team acknowledged below, made up the 2016 MMM Steering Committee.

Finally, on behalf of this Steering Committee, and indeed the whole MMM community, the staff of Simply Vintage Event Management (SVEM) are gratefully acknowledged. Through their hard work and professionalism the team of Molly Bartkowski, Diane Melton (Conference Managers), Regina Mohr (Abstracts/Publications Manager), Jennifer Fiske (Exhibits Manager), and Ashley Cesare (Registration) kept the conference organization on schedule and ensured the smooth running of the entire conference. They always planned well ahead, making the job of the Steering committee much easier. They were simply amazing to work with. Final recognition for the 2016 MMM Conference should of course go to the two sponsors, AIP Publishing and the IEEE Magnetics Society. The conference is particularly indebted to Bill Burke of AIP Publishing, and Randall Victora, Mingzhong Wu and Bruce Terris of the IEEE Magnetics Society, as well as former chairs Chris Leighton and Axel Hoffmann for their invaluable assistance and support.

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