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Modification of Magnetic Anisotropy at the Interface between Antiferromagnet and Ferromagnet

Modification of Magnetic Anisotropy at the Interface between Antiferromagnet and Ferromagnet
Kim, Hyun-Joong
DGIST Authors
Kim, Hyun-JoongHong, Jung-IlKim, Dong-Hyun
Kim, Dong-Hyun
Issued Date
Awarded Date
Exchange bias effect, piezoelectric strain, mechanical vibration, spin hall current
In this thesis, electrical modulation of magnetic anisotropy has been investigated by using various methods including applying a mechanical strain, vibration and spin current. These external stimuli were mainly applied on exchange coupled antiferromagnet (AFM)/ferromagnet (FM) bilayers. In our present work, it was demonstrated that the magnitude of anisotropy as well as the direction of easy axis is determined by the applied DC piezoelectric strain. Furthermore, mechanical vibration, which is generated when AC electric field is applied on a piezoelectric substrate, can repeatedly realign or readjust the AFM spins along a desired direction in the single specimen. Finally, the AFM spins, which are distributed randomly in as-grown state, can be aligned in one direction by injecting spin current into AFM layer without an external magnetic field. This thesis is organized in three parts.
In the first section, coupling of magnetoelastic and piezoelectric effects is achieved with the FM Co60Fe20B20/AFM Co0.7Ni0.3O bilayers deposited on the surface of piezoelectric single crystalline substrate. Piezoelectric strain of the substrate is successfully transferred to the magnetic layers, and controllable variation of magnetic anisotropy in response to the elastic deformation is demonstrated in the M-H loops measured at various azimuthal angles with respect to the direction of AFM spin alignment. Magnetic behaviors of the exchange coupled bilayers can be understood by considering the competition of many magnetic anisotropy energies within the magnetic film based on the modified Meiklejohn and Bean (MB) model. From the comparison of experimentally measured results with the modified MB model, it is found that the strain in the film from the substrate effectively introduces additional uniaxial anisotropy in the FM layer with its anisotropy direction determined by the direction of the applied strain.
In the second section, alignment of the AFM spin structure in a uniaxial direction usually required a field annealing procedure, that heats the AFM material to a temperature above Néel temperature followed by cooling inside the magnetic field. Ferromagnet (FM) coupled to the uniaxially aligned AFM spins exhibits unidirectional anisotropy conventionally measured by exchange bias effect along the cooling field direction. In the present study, for the first time, we report that an alternating mechanical vibration in kHz frequency range can replace the heating procedure. AFM/FM bilayers were deposited on the surface of piezoelectric single crystalline substrate and mechanical vibration was applied via the AC electric field across the substrate at room temperature. It was found that the exchange bias effect of the bilayers can be set in any desired direction along the externally applied magnetic field with the help of vibration. The simple technique presented in the present study exclude the heating procedure, hence enables the local control of exchange bias effect in the micro-structured devices. Furthermore, repeated post-resetting of exchange bias direction as well as its magnitude can also be achieved.
In the third section, trilayers structure consisting of FM alloy CoFeB/AFM IrMn/heavy metal Pt layers was prepared and the manipulation of its exchange bias effect was achieved without applying an external magnetic field. Spin polarized current, generated by the spin Hall effect of the electrical current through Pt layer, was shown to be able to control the spin alignment state in the neighboring antiferromagnetic material as well as the corresponding exchange bias effect in the ferromagnet coupled to the antiferromagnet. The results demonstrated stable and reliable switching of spin structure in antiferromagnets providing a useful route to all-electrical manipulation of antiferromagnetic states without a need for bulky global application of external magnetic field. Therefore, with the results presented in the present work, precise control of magnetism including both ferromagnet and antiferromagnet in submicron to nanometer length scales can be expected.
Table Of Contents
Abstract i
List of contents iii
List of figures and tables ⅴ

Ⅰ. Controllable Magnetic Anisotropy Introduced by DC Piezoelectric Strain 1
1.1 Introduction about control of magnetic anisotropy using piezoelectric strain 2
1.2 Exchange biased system 5
1.3 Angular dependence of HE 7
1.3.1 Angular dependence of HE dependent on azimuthal configuration
of AFM spins 7
1.3.2 Modified Stoner-Wohlfarth Model & Critical Angle 10
1.3.3 Modified Meiklejohn-Bean Model 12
1.4 FE/AFM/FM structures 15
1.4.1 Sample fabrication 15
1.4.2 Crystalline structure by XRD &TEM 16
1.4.3 Piezoelectric strain of PMN-PZT 19
1.4.4 Methods & M-H Loops at various angles 21
1.5 Modified exchange anisotropy of FM/AFM bilayers by piezoelectric strain 24
1.5.1 Change of M-H loops under various electric field 24
1.5.2 Modulation of exchange anisotropy depending on strain type & its elastic stability 27
1.6 Analysis 33
1.6.1 Analyses of critical angle based on modified Stoner-Wohlfarth Model 33
1.6.2 Numerical analyses based on modified Meiklejohn and Bean Model 37
1.7 Summary 46

Ⅱ. Realignment of Antiferromagnetic Easy Axis Using Mechanical Vibration from Applied AC Electric Field 47
2.1 Field-mechanical vibration procedure 48
2.1.1 Setting unidirectional anisotropy in AFM/FM bilayers
after field-mechanical vibration procedure 48
2.1.2 Rotated AFM spin axes by piezoelectric strain 55
2.1.3 Self-heat generation from PMN-PZT 57
2.2 Realignment of antiferromagnetic easy axis in various AFM/FM structures 62
2.2.1 CoNiO/CoFeB structure 62
2.2.2 IrMn/Co structure 66
2.2.3 IrMn/CoFeB structure 68
2.2.4 IrMn/PMA [Co/Pt]n structure 72
2.3 Local exchange bias setting by field-mechanical vibration procedure 74
2.4 Summary 77

Ⅲ. Field-Free Control of Exchange Bias by Spin Hall Currents 78
3.1 Introduction of AFM spintronics 79
3.2 Control of exchange bias field by spin-Hall currents 82
3.2.1 Sample fabrication & Method for injecting spin current 82
3.2.2 Creation of HE by injecting spin current into AFM layer 85
3.2.3 Change of M-H loops after injecting various magnitude of current 88
3.2.4 HE reversal after the injection of pulse current in two opposite directions 90
3.2.5 Joule heating 93
3.3 Summary 96
Department of Emerging Materials Science
Related Researcher
  • 홍정일 Hong, Jung-Il 화학물리학과
  • Research Interests Electric and Magnetic Properties of Nanostructured Materials; Spintronics
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Department of Physics and Chemistry Theses Ph.D.


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