Efficiently manipulating magnetism with a sputtered topological insulator (Vol. 50, No. 3)

Efficiently manipulating magnetism with a sputtered topological insulator
Magneto-optic Kerr microscopy imaging of the current induced SOT switching measurements

The field of spintronics aims to efficiently control the magnetic state of magnetic material using electric currents for better magnetic memories. In this regard, the spin-orbit coupling (SOC) effect, which couples the orbital and spin degrees of the freedom of electrons, has received enormous research attention. The SOC provides a pathway to convert an electric current in a non-magnetic material to a spin current which can subsequently be utilized for fast and efficient control of a magnetic material.

Recently, the material topological insulator (TI) has gained research interest due to its exotic properties including high SOC effect. Although earlier works have utilized the SOC effect of TI to efficiently control the magnetization, the TI material was mostly grown using molecular beam epitaxy technique which is not common in the memory industry. In this work, the authors utilize the more common growth technique of sputtering to grow the TI material (Bismuth Selenide), which allows both the TI and the magnet to be grown in situ. Subsequently, the authors demonstrate a highly efficient switching of the magnetic information storage layer using the high SOC from the sputtered Bismuth Selenide.

R. Ramaswamy, T. Dutta, S. Liang, G. Yang, M. S. M. Saifullah, and H. Yang, J. Phys. D: Appl. Phys. 52, 224001 (2019)