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  1. Abstract The interconversion of charge and spin currents via spin-Hall effect is essential for spintronics. Energy-efficient and deterministic switching of magnetization can be achieved when spin polarizations of these spin currents are collinear with the magnetization. However, symmetry conditions generally restrict spin polarizations to be orthogonal to both the charge and spin flows. Spin polarizations can deviate from such direction in nonmagnetic materials only when the crystalline symmetry is reduced. Here, we show control of the spin polarization direction by using a non-collinear antiferromagnet Mn 3 GaN, in which the triangular spin structure creates a low magnetic symmetry while maintainingmore »a high crystalline symmetry. We demonstrate that epitaxial Mn 3 GaN/permalloy heterostructures can generate unconventional spin-orbit torques at room temperature corresponding to out-of-plane and Dresselhaus-like spin polarizations which are forbidden in any sample with two-fold rotational symmetry. Our results demonstrate an approach based on spin-structure design for controlling spin-orbit torque, enabling high-efficient antiferromagnetic spintronics.« less
  2. Abstract

    Although low-dimensionalS = 1 antiferromagnets remain of great interest, difficulty in obtaining high-quality single crystals of the newest materials hinders experimental research in this area. Polycrystalline samples are more readily produced, but there are inherent problems in extracting the magnetic properties of anisotropic systems from powder data. Following a discussion of the effect of powder-averaging on various measurement techniques, we present a methodology to overcome this issue using thermodynamic measurements. In particular we focus on whether it is possible to characterise the magnetic properties of polycrystalline, anisotropic samples using readily available laboratory equipment. We test the efficacy of our method usingmore »the magnets [Ni(H2O)2(3,5-lutidine)4](BF4)2and Ni(H2O)2(acetate)2(4-picoline)2, which have negligible exchange interactions, as well as the antiferromagnet [Ni(H2O)2(pyrazine)2](BF4)2, and show that we are able to extract the anisotropy parameters in each case. The results obtained from the thermodynamic measurements are checked against electron-spin resonance and neutron diffraction. We also present a density functional method, which incorporates spin–orbit coupling to estimate the size of the anisotropy in [Ni(H2O)2(pyrazine)2](BF4)2.

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