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Toggle Spin-Orbit Torque MRAM with Perpendicular Magnetic Anisotropy


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      Spin-orbit torque (SOT) is a promising switching mechanism for magnetic random-access memory (MRAM) as a result of the potential for improved switching speed and energy-efficiency. It is of particular interest to develop an SOT-MRAM device with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) in order to leverage the greater density and thermal stability achievable with PMA as opposed to in-plane magnetic anisotropy. However, the orthogonality between SOT and PMA prevents deterministic directional switching without an additional device component that breaks the symmetry, such as an external magnetic field or complex physical structure; not only do these components complicate fabrication, they also are not robust to variations in fabrication and applied switching current. This letter therefore proposes a simple SOT-MRAM structure with PMA in which deterministic toggle switching is achieved without requiring additional device components. Furthermore, this toggle PMA SOT-MRAM is shown to be far more robust than previous approaches for directional PMA SOT-MRAM, with greater than 50% tolerance to applied switching current magnitude. This letter describes the physical structure and toggle switching mechanism, provides micromagnetic simulations demonstrating its feasibility, and evaluates the robustness and tolerance to material parameters to guide the fabrication of optimized devices that will jumpstart the third generation of MRAM.

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      03 May 2019

      Custom metadata cond-mat.mes-hall

      Technical & Applied physics, Nanophysics


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