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Title: Magnetic skin layer of NiO(100) probed by polarization-dependent spectromicroscopy

Using polarization-dependent x-ray photoemission electron microscopy, we have investigated the surface effects on antiferromagnetic (AFM) domain formation. Depth-resolved information obtained from our study indicates the presence of strain-induced surface AFM domains on some of the cleaved NiO(100) crystals, which are unusually thinner than bulk AFM domain wall widths (∼150 nm). Existence of such magnetic skin layer is substantiated by exchange-coupled ferromagnetic Fe domains in Fe/NiO(100), thereby evidencing the influence of this surface AFM domains on interfacial magnetic coupling. Our observations demonstrate a depth evolution of AFM structure in presence of induced surface strain, while the surface symmetry-breaking in absence of induced strain does not modify the bulk AFM domain structure. Realization of such thin surface AFM layer will provide better microscopic understanding of the exchange bias phenomena.
Authors:
;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Surface Physics and Material Science Division, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, 1/AF Bidhannagar, Kolkata 700064 (India)
  2. Synchrotron SOLEIL, L'Orme des Merisiers, Saint-Aubain-BP 48 91192 Gif-sur-Yvette CEDEX (France)
  3. Diamond Light Source, Harwell Science and Innovation Campus, Didcot, Oxfordshire OX11 0DE (United Kingdom)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22299904
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 104; Journal Issue: 24; Other Information: (c) 2014 AIP Publishing LLC; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
75 CONDENSED MATTER PHYSICS, SUPERCONDUCTIVITY AND SUPERFLUIDITY; ANTIFERROMAGNETISM; ATOMIC FORCE MICROSCOPY; COUPLING; CRYSTALS; DOMAIN STRUCTURE; ELECTRON MICROSCOPY; LAYERS; NICKEL OXIDES; PHOTOEMISSION; POLARIZATION; STRAINS; SURFACES; SYMMETRY BREAKING; X RADIATION