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      Magnetic switching by spin torque from the spin Hall effect

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          Abstract

          The spin Hall effect (SHE) generates spin currents within nonmagnetic materials. Previously, studies of the SHE have been motivated primarily to understand its fundamental origin and magnitude. Here we demonstrate, using measurement and modeling, that in a Pt/Co bilayer with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy the SHE can produce a spin transfer torque that is strong enough to efficiently rotate and reversibly switch the Co magnetization, thereby providing a new strategy both to understand the SHE and to manipulate magnets. We suggest that the SHE torque can have a similarly strong influence on current-driven magnetic domain wall motion in Pt/ferromagnet multilayers. We estimate that in optimized devices the SHE torque can switch magnetic moments using currents comparable to those in magnetic tunnel junctions operated by conventional spin-torque switching, meaning that the SHE can enable magnetic memory and logic devices with similar performance but simpler architecture than the current state of the art.

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          Most cited references 1

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          Dissipationless Quantum Spin Current at Room Temperature

          While microscopic laws of physics are invariant under the reversal of the arrow of time, the transport of energy and information in most devices is an irreversible process. It is this irreversibility that leads to intrinsic dissipations in electronic devices and limits the possibility of quantum computation. We theoreticallypredict that the electric field can induce a substantial amount of dissipationless quantum spin current at room temperature, in hole doped semiconductors such as Si, Ge and GaAs. Based on a generalization of the quantum Hall effect, the predicted effect leads to efficient spin injection without the need for metallic ferromagnets. Principles found in this work could enable quantum spintronic devices with integrated information processing and storage units, operating with low power consumption and performing reversible quantum computation.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            31 October 2011
            2011-11-17
            Article
            10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.096602
            23002867
            1110.6846

            http://arxiv.org/licenses/nonexclusive-distrib/1.0/

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            cond-mat.mtrl-sci

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