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Superconductivity assisted change of the perpendicular magnetic anisotropy in V/MgO/Fe junctions

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journal contribution
posted on 04.10.2021, 15:56 by César González‑Ruano, Diego Caso, Lina G Johnsen, Coriolan Tiusan, Michel Hehn, Niladri BanerjeeNiladri Banerjee, Jacob Linder, Farkhad G Aliev
Controlling the perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) in thin films has received considerable attention in recent years due to its technological importance. PMA based devices usually involve heavy-metal (oxide)/ferromagnetic-metal bilayers, where, thanks to interfacial spin-orbit coupling (SOC), the in-plane (IP) stability of the magnetization is broken. Here we show that in V/MgO/Fe(001) epitaxial junctions with competing in-plane and out-of-plane (OOP) magnetic anisotropies, the SOC mediated interaction between a ferromagnet (FM) and a superconductor (SC) enhances the effective PMA below the superconducting transition. This produces a partial magnetization reorientation without any applied field for all but the largest junctions, where the IP anisotropy is more robust; for the smallest junctions there is a reduction of the field required to induce a complete OOP transition (HOOP) due to the stronger competition between the IP and OOP anisotropies. Our results suggest that the degree of effective PMA could be controlled by the junction lateral size in the presence of superconductivity and an applied electric field. We also discuss how the HOOP field could be affected by the interaction between magnetic stray fields and superconducting vortices. Our experimental findings, supported by numerical modelling of the ferromagnet-superconductor interaction, open pathways to active control of magnetic anisotropy in the emerging dissipation-free superconducting spin electronics.


Spanish Ministerio de Ciencia (RTI2018-095303-B-C55) and Consejería de Educación e Investigación de la Comunidad de Madrid (NANOMAGCOST-CM Ref. P2018/NMT-4321) Grants

Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation, through the “Mará de Maeztu” Program for Units of Excellence in R&D (CEX2018-000805-M) and “Acción financiada por la Comunidad de Madrid en el marco del convenio plurianual con la Universidad Autónoma de Madrid en Línea 3: Excelencia para el Profesorado Universitario”

Comunidad de Madrid by contract through Consejería de Ciencia, Universidades e Investigación y Fondo Social Europeo (PEJ2018-AI/IND-10364)

Spin-Orbit Coupling-Driven Superconducting Spintronics

Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council

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Research Council of Norway through its Centres of Excellence funding scheme Grant 262633 QuSpin

“EMERSPIN” grant ID PN-IIIP4-ID-PCE-2016-0143, No. UEFISCDI: 22/12.07.2017 and “MODESKY” Grant ID PN-III-P4-ID-PCE-2020-0230 No. UEFISCDI: 4/04.01.2021

CPER MatDS and the French PIA project “Lorraine Université d’Excellence”, reference ANR-15-IDEX-04-LUE



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  • Physics

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Scientific Reports




Springer Nature


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This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Springer Nature under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence (CC BY 4.0). Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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Dr Niladri Banerjee. Deposit date: 8 September 2021

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