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Title: Current-perpendicular-to-the-plane giant magnetoresistance in spin-valves with AgSn alloy spacers

We investigate the use of AgSn alloys as the spacer layer in current-perpendicular-to-the-plane magnetoresistance devices. Alloying with Sn increases resistivity but results in a reasonably long (>10 nm) spin-diffusion length, so large magnetoresistance can be achieved with thin AgSn spacers. Compared to Ag thin films, AgSn forms smaller grain sizes, reduced roughness, and exhibits less interdiffusion upon annealing, resulting in decreased interlayer magnetic coupling in exchange biased spin-valves. AgSn also shows improved corrosion resistance compared to Ag, which is advantageous for nanofabrication, including magnetic recording head sensors. Combining a AgSn spacer with Co-based Heusler alloy ferromagnet in an exchange biased, polycrystalline trilayer thinner than 12 nm results in magnetoresistance values up to 15% at room temperature.
Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ;  [1]
  1. San Jose Research Center, HGST, a Western Digital Company, San Jose, California 95135 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22494644
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Applied Physics; Journal Volume: 118; Journal Issue: 4; Other Information: (c) 2015 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; 71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; ANNEALING; COBALT BASE ALLOYS; CORROSION RESISTANCE; DIFFUSION LENGTH; FABRICATION; GRAIN SIZE; HEUSLER ALLOYS; MAGNETORESISTANCE; NANOSTRUCTURES; POLYCRYSTALS; ROUGHNESS; SENSORS; SILVER; SILVER ALLOYS; SPACERS; SPIN; TEMPERATURE RANGE 0273-0400 K; THIN FILMS