Magnetic and electric properties of (Fe, Co)/(Si, Ge) multilayers

Tadeusz Lucinski 1  and Piotr Chomiuk 1
  • 1 Institute of Molecular Physics Polish Academy of Sciences, Mariana Smoluchowskiego 17, 60-179, Poznan, Poland

Abstract

We review selected results concerning the interlayer exchange coupling in Fe/SixFe1−x , Fe/Ge and Co/Si layered structures. Among the ferromagnet/semiconductor systems, Fe/Si structures are the most popular owing to their strong antiferromagnetic interlayer coupling. We show that such interaction depends not only on semiconducting sublayer thickness, but also on deposition techniques and on the chemical composition of the sublayer as well. In similar heterostructures e.g. Fe/Ge, antiferromagnetic coupling was observed only in ion-beam deposited trilayers at low temperatures. In contrast, in Fe/Ge multilayers deposited by sputtering, no such coupling was found. However, when the Ge is partially substituted by Si, antiferromagnetic interlayer coupling appears. For Co/Si multilayers, we observed a very weak exchange coupling and its oscillatory behavior. The growth of Co on Si occurs in an island growth mode. The evolution of magnetic loop shapes can be successfully explained by the interplay between interlayer coupling and anisotropy terms.

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