In this work, the authors study the time- and temperature-dependence of optically induced magnetization in bulk crystals of slightly oxygen-deficient SrTiO3–δ using an optically coupled superconducting quantum interference device magnetometer. Circularly-polarized sub-bandgap light is found to induce a weak (∼5 × 10−7 emu) but extremely long-lived (hours) magnetic moment in SrTiO3–δ at zero magnetic field. The authors utilize this effect to demonstrate that SrTiO3–δ crystals can be used as an optically addressable magnetic memory by writing and subsequently reading magnetic patterns with light. The induced magnetization is consistent with that of a polarized ensemble of independent oxygen-vacancy-related complexes, rather than from collective or long-range magnetic order.

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