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Spin Transport in Epitaxial Heusler Alloy/

III-V Semiconductor Heterostructures


Kevin D. Christie, Chad Geppert, Tim Peterson, Changjiang Liu,
Gordon Stecklein, Paul A. Crowell
School of Physics and Astronomy
University of Minnesota

Sahil J. Patel, Mihir Pendharkar, Chris J. Palmstrm


Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Dept. of Materials
University of California Santa Barbara

Outline
Why lateral spin valves
Why Heuslers: the Co2FexMn1-xSi family
Progress in semiconductor lateral spin valves
Improvements in high temperature performance
Microwave detection of spin accumulation

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Lateral spin valve


Allows the study of spin-physics in wide array of materials systems
ferromagnetic contacts (Fe, Co, Py, Co2MnSi, etc.)
metallic channels (Al, Cu, Ag, etc.); 1%
semiconducting channels (GaAs, Si, Ge, graphene, etc.)
Can quantify injection rates, detection efficiencies, spin-lifetimes,
etc.
50%

injector

5 m

detector

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

The non-local measurement


V
F1

F2

eS

No charge current flows in F2.


The electrochemical potential is measured for
each state of F2 (seemingly straight-forward). Dm
The (less than 100%) polarization of F2 reduces
the signal from the ideal value.
F2 draws a spin current. This can perturb N
(irrelevant in this system)
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Outline
Why lateral spin valves
Why Heuslers: the Co2FexMn1-xSi family
Progress in semiconductor lateral spin valves
Improvements in high temperature performance
Microwave detection of spin accumulation

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Co2MnSi a potential half-metal


Mn

Co
Si

Predicted to be a half-metal with a relatively large minority


gap
Lattice-matched to GaAs

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Co2MnSi a potential half-metal


Mn
Co
Si

Predicted to be a half-metal with a relatively large minority gap


Lattice-matched to GaAs
Spin injection will work [see Dong et al., Appl. Phys. Lett. 86, 102107
(2006) for Co2MnGe/GaAs]
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

General idea: Fermi level in a rigid band model

Co2MnSi

Co2Mn0.5Fe0.5Si

Co2FeSi

Can we tune the Fermi level through the minority spin gap?
B. Balke et al., Solid State Communications 150, 529532 (2010).

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Heusler alloy: Co2MnSi


Co2MnSi

Mn

Cap

Co

L21 ordered

Si

= 985 K
= 4.97

Co2MnSi

GaAs

Near perfect lattice


match to GaAs

= 5.65


(STEM courtesy of Paul Voyles, UW Madison)

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Useful features of these alloys


As indicated by work on MTJs, the tunneling polarization is
high; Co2MnSi is half-metallic or nearly so.
As suggested by the cartoons on the previous viewgraphs,
the density of states at the Fermi level is relatively small.
This is a corollary to the fact that changes so rapidly with
composition.

Grown on (100) GaAs, they have a very large in-plane


uniaxial anisotropy. This turns out to be of practical utility.
The LLG damping is particularly small for Co2MnSi
(~ 0.003 at high temperatures)

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Outline

Why lateral spin valves

Why Heuslers: the Co2FexMn1-xSi family


Progress in semiconductor lateral spin valves
Improvements in high temperature performance
Microwave detection of spin accumulation

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

FM/n-GaAs Heterostructures

Graded doping used to thin


natural forming Schottky barrier
Interface states lead to complex
bias dependence

Epitaxially grown along [001]


Fe polarization at Fermi level 40%
Co2MnSi proposed to be half-metallic
Surface-induced FM anisotropy

0.7 eV

w/o graded doping


(~ 100 nm)

n-GaAs

FM
w/ graded
doping
7/31/2015

energy

cap
FM : Co2MnSi or Fe
(5 nm)
n+ : GaAs n ~ 5 x 1018/cm3 (15 nm)
n n+ : GaAs
(15 nm)
n : GaAs
n ~ 3 x 1016 cm-3 (~ 2500 nm)
i-GaAs [001]

12 nm

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

depth
12

Lateral spin valve

diffusion
diffusion only

drift
unbiased (non-local)

biased (non-local)
0

100

Fe
Co2MnSi

DV (mV)

DV (mV)

80
60
40

Fe

20

-200

Co2MnSi

-400

0
-250

250

-250

250

Field (Oe)

Field (Oe)
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

13

Spin drift-diffusion model


DIFFUSION CONSTANT Same for spin and charge?

drift mobility
=
concentration
Continuity equation
(diffusivecarrier
regime):
for spin/
bulk modulus
(Einstein relation)

relaxation
steady
state

0=
=
+ 2
+ 0

drift & diffusion

7/31/2015

injection
rate

Larmor precession

diffusionSPIN
constant
LIFETIME Reasonable values for n-GaAs?
spin lifetime

electron energy
2 3
fractional
number
1
polarization

spin-orbit prefactor (Dresselhaus)


electric field

momentum relaxation time


mobility(Dyakonov-Perel)
gyromagnetic ratio
magnetic field
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14

The full time of flight experiment: add drift


= 0.79

Solid curves are the analytic solution


7/31/2015

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Non-local Hanle fitting


60 K

760 A/cm2

120 K

150
90 K
1520

DV (mV)

100
60 K

1140
50

760
30 K

380 A/cm2

-600

-300

300

Field (Oe)

600

-600

-300

300

600

Field (Oe)

Multiple biases at each temperature fit with a single set of parameters


Hanle curves with lobes allow extraction of diffusion constant

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

16

24

12

free-fit

18

12

Einstein

6
0

Spin Lifetime (ns)

Diffusion constant (mm/ns2)

Spin lifetime and diffusion constant

0
0

30

60

90

120

150

Temperature (K)
Allowing to be a fitting parameter yields values in agreement with
the Einstein relation: spin and charge diffusion constants are the
same.
Larger uncertainty at higher temperatures due to disappearance of
lobes
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

17

Estimates of the spin polarization


E
DVcd (mV)

0.0

+ V

-0.5

-1.0
-1.5

-2.0
-2.5

= 30 K
-50

50

Field (mT)

DOS ()

We can set a lower bound for the spin-polarization if we assume a perfect


1)
detection efficiency(
=


=
= 60%
() =

+
The measured spin0splitting is half of the Fermienergy
= 5 meV
=1
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Sign of the spin accumulation by Hanle measurements


Exploit hyperfine coupling:
Co2FeSi/GaAs

majority spin
accumulation

60 K

500

minority spin
accumulation

500

40 K

DV (mV)

DV (mV)

Co2MnSi/GaAs

0
-75 -50 -25

25

50

75

-75 -50 -25

25

50

Field (mT)

Field (mT)

Sign of the spin polarization in the bulk GaAs can be determined in the
presence of a hyperfine field

7/31/2015

= 2

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75

Spin Accumulation (%)

Co2Mn1-xFexSi: comparison with Fe


75

Co2MnSi
Co2Mn0.7Fe0.3Si

50

Co2FeSi

25

Fe

0
-25
-50

50

100

150

Temperature (K)

Polarizations determined by biased detector technique


Sign determined by hyperfine field
Sign change in going from Co2MnSi to Co2FeSi is expected,
but overall sign is backwards
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Interlude: (Scalar) Spin EMF

=0

Current in each spin-channel:


carrier
densities

electrostatic
potential

DOS

spin-indep.
mobility

chemical
potentials

Result:

Expand chemical potentials w.r.t. :

asymmetric shift:

7/31/2015

spin-generated EMF

1
2 2
2
=
(
+ 2 )=
2

9
Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

21

Spin-EMF, DVCH (mV)

Quadratic dependence
100

75 K

30 K
45
K
60 K

10

slope = 2

0.1
1

Log-log plot of magnitudes


demonstrates quadratic dependence

10
Non-local, DVDH (mV)

Deviation at large bias due to large


E-field at injector (drift effects)
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis


22

Dual-injector experiment

jB = jD = 380 A/cm2

150
125

D
H

Spins injected simultaneously at FM


contacts B and D
Clear spin valve signals observed at
contact C
Low-field features due to hyperfine
interactions

Spin EMF, DVCH (mV)

Field

parallel

30 K

100
anti-parallel

75
50

hyperfine

45 K

25
0

60 K

x2

-400 -200

200

400

Field (Oe)

I. J. Vera-Marun et al., Nature Phys. 8, 313 (2012).


7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

23

Number polarization (%)

Polarization vs. Temperature


Co2MnSi
60

(3.8 x 1016/cm3)

40

20

Fe/n-GaAs
(5.5 x 1016/cm3)

0
30

45

60

75

90

105

120

Temperature (K)

For > 0.3, need to account for Thompson effect: =


Results are independent of any assumptions about
interfacial spin injection/detection efficiencies
This resolved the three-terminal discrepancy
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

24

Outline

Why lateral spin valves

Why Heuslers: the Co2FexMn1-xSi family


Progress in semiconductor lateral spin valves
Improvements in high temperature performance
Microwave detection of spin accumulation

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

What about room temperature?


Biased detector

200

250 nm separation, 150 K


Idet= 0

DVNL (mV)

150

1 mA
10 mA
100 mA

is linear in spin injection rate, , with


fixed non-zero detector bias

100

becomes larger with detector bias ,


which we interpret as a detector bias
dependence of ( )

50

0.0

0.2

Iinj (mA)

7/31/2015

0.4

= ( )

( )

We also see saturation of at large .

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Complication: Tunneling AMR (TAMR)


e
(2 )3
m
y

R ( , )

FM
GaAs

[1, 1, 0]

Taniso sin 2 ( )[ f ( , ) g ( , ) cos(2 )]

2
dEd
k||T ( E , k|| )[ f F ( E ) f N ( E )]

: Rashba spin-orbit coupling


constant
: Dresselhaus spin-orbit coupling
constant

R R0 DRin sin 2 ( ) cos 2 ( ) DRout sin 2 ( )


J. Moser et al., PRL, 99, 056601 (2007)
A. Matos-Abiague et al., PRB, 80, 045312 (2009)
K. Wang et al., PRB, 88, 054407 (2013)

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Ramifications for a biased detector


Any contact rotation leads to a TAMR contribution to thethree-terminal
signal; i.e. an additional field-dependent voltage at the detector. This is
large and only weakly temperature-dependent.
2-fold surface symmetry

La Bella et al., PRL 83, 2989 (1999).

The ratio of the uniaxial to fourfold anisotropies is larger in


Co2Mn1-xFexSi than in Fe. This makes the Heuslers very forgiving.
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Devices operating at room temperature

Use of Co2FeSi as injector/detector


Electron beam lithography
Performance today comparable to low-T performance as of a
few years ago (particularly size of non-local voltage)
Spin diffusion length at 300 K is ~ 800 nm
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Temperature dependence

By measuring the separation dependence,


we extract the spin diffusion length .

10

For

fitted s (ns)

Detector

DVNL (mV)

Channel (n-GaAs)

0.1

0.01

100

100
We fit to the steady state solution of 10
the spin
drift-diffusion equation to extract
Temperature
10 (K)

= 0 = + D 2 +

relaxation

7/31/2015

diffusion

drift

drive

Separation (mm)

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

25 K
50 K
100 K
150 K
200 K
250 K
300 K

Outline

Why lateral spin valves

Why Heuslers: the Co2FexMn1-xSi family


Progress in semiconductor lateral spin valves
Improvements in high temperature performance
Microwave detection of spin accumulation

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

What about Hanle measurements?

Conventional wisdom: these become difficult or impossible


at high temperatures because the lifetime is too short
This is reinforced by the fact that the g-factor in GaAs
is so small (i.e. -0.44 insteady of 2)
Ordinary magnetoresistance is very large

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Hanle measurement at room temperature fails

Voltage (mV)

436.20
T = 300 K
Co2MnSi/n-GaAs

435.60

Signal/Background ~104

I = 1 mA
5 50 mm2

435.00

Impossible to extract spin


signal at room temperature
in n-GaAs system

434.40
433.80
-4000 -2000

2000

4000

Field (Oe)
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

What about Hanle measurements?


Conventional wisdom: these become difficult or impossible
at high temperatures because the lifetime is too short

This is reinforced by the fact that the g-factor in GaAs


is so small (i.e. -0.44 insteady of 2)
Ordinary magnetoresistance is very large
Solution: use the Hanle concept (sensitivity to precession),
but exploit the fact that spins can precess in the FM as well
as the semiconductor.

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Solution: modulate the injector with FMR


Cap
(5 nm)
FM
n+ : GaAs n ~ 5 x 1018/cm3 (18 nm)
(15 nm)
n n+ : GaAs
n : GaAs
n ~ 3 x 1016 cm-3

(~ 2500 nm)

i-GaAs [001]

This is a three-terminal measurement


with microwave excitation

Signal is the difference of the 3T


signal with and without microwave field

FM: Co2MnSi, Co2FeSi, Fe


Skipping details...

7/31/2015

V
0

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Spin accumulation leads to an FMR peak in

Voltage (mV)

-1

A strong resonance peak is


observed (note the sign is
negative)

-2
T = 100 K
I = 3 mA
f = 13 GHz

-3

The peak position is well


described by the Kittels
formula

-4
2000

2200

2400

2600

Field (Oe)

At forward bias, the FMR signal is


dominated by spin accumulation

Linewidth determined by ~0.003


for Co2MnSi at room temperature
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Modeling FMR spin detection

()

: Spin injection current


: Detection efficiency
: Spin diffusion constant
: Spin lifetime
: Precession cone angles

n-GaAs

7/31/2015

()

1
2( )

2
2
= ( + )
2
2

1
+
1
2
2
2
2 1 + 2 2 1 +

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Temperature dependence (comparison with NLSV)


4.5

3
VFMR (Co2MnSi)

900 600

3.0

1.5

0.0

VNLSV (Co2MnSi)
VNLSV (Co2FeSi)

600 400

VNLSV (mV)

VFMR (arb. u.)

VFMR (Co2FeSi)

300 200

0
0

100

200

300

T (K)

Agreement with spin-valve data for both Co2FeSi and Co2MnSi

7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Frequency dependence

Spin lifetime extracted agrees with those obtained from spin-valve


measurements
At high temperatures, this technique is much more sensitive than
the conventional spin valve approach
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis

Summary
Co2Mn1-xFexSi is a very effective spin injector/detector
for GaAs
The high polarization helps, although in our case the
highest polarizations measured are about 70%
There are other features of these materials that are as
useful as the high polarization
Lateral spin valves useful as quantitative tools up to
room temperature
Microwave detection of spin accumulation is a complementary
technique, particularly when is short.
7/31/2015

Heusler Workshop, Minneapolis