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  1. Mn 3 Sn, a metallic antiferromagnet with an anti-chiral 120° spin structure, generates intriguing magneto-transport signatures such as a large anomalous Hall effect, spin-polarized current with novel symmetries, anomalous Nernst effect, and magneto-optic Kerr effect. When grown epitaxially as MgO(110)[001]∥Mn3Sn(01¯1¯0)[0001], Mn3Sn experiences a uniaxial tensile strain, which changes the bulk sixfold anisotropy to a twofold perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA). Here, we investigate the field-assisted spin–orbit-torque (SOT)-driven dynamics in single-domain Mn3Sn with PMA. We find that for non-zero external magnetic fields, the magnetic octupole moment of Mn3Sn can be switched between the two stable states if the input current is between two field-dependent critical currents. Below the lower critical current, the magnetic octupole moment exhibits a stationary state in the vicinity of the initial stable state. On the other hand, above the higher critical current, the magnetic octupole moment shows oscillatory dynamics which could, in principle, be tuned from the 100s of megahertz to the terahertz range. We obtain approximate analytic expressions of the two critical currents that agree very well with the numerical simulations for experimentally relevant magnetic fields. We also obtain a unified functional form of the switching time vs the input current for different magnetic fields. Finally, we show that for lower values of Gilbert damping (α≲2×10−3), the critical currents and the final steady states depend significantly on α. The numerical and analytic results presented in our work can be used by both theorists and experimentalists to understand the SOT-driven order dynamics in PMA Mn3Sn and design future experiments and devices.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 22, 2025
  2. Nanoscale magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) devices can efficiently convert thermal energy in the environment into random bitstreams for computational modeling and cryptography. We recently showed that perpendicular MTJs actuated by nanosecond pulses can generate true random numbers at high data rates. Here, we explore the dependence of probability bias—the deviations from equal probability (50/50) 0/1 bit outcomes—of such devices on temperature, pulse amplitude, and duration. Our experimental results and device model demonstrate that operation with nanosecond pulses in the ballistic limit minimizes variation of probability bias with temperature to be far lower than that of devices operated with longer-duration pulses. Furthermore, operation in the short-pulse limit reduces the bias variation with pulse amplitude while rendering the device more sensitive to pulse duration. These results are significant for designing true random number generator MTJ circuits and establishing operating conditions.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available January 29, 2025
  3. We numerically investigate and develop analytic models for both the DC and pulsed spin–orbit-torque (SOT)-driven response of order parameter in single-domain Mn3Sn, which is a metallic antiferromagnet with an anti-chiral 120° spin structure. We show that DC currents above a critical threshold can excite oscillatory dynamics of the order parameter in the gigahertz to terahertz frequency spectrum. Detailed models of the oscillation frequency vs input current are developed and found to be in excellent agreement with the numerical simulations of the dynamics. In the case of pulsed excitation, the magnetization can be switched from one stable state to any of the other five stable states in the Kagome plane by tuning the duration or the amplitude of the current pulse. Precise functional forms of the final switched state vs the input current are derived, offering crucial insights into the switching dynamics of Mn3Sn. The readout of the magnetic state can be carried out via either the anomalous Hall effect or the recently demonstrated tunneling magnetoresistance in an all-Mn3Sn junction. We also discuss possible disturbance of the magnetic order due to heating that may occur if the sample is subject to large currents. Operating the device in a pulsed mode or using low DC currents reduces the peak temperature rise in the sample due to Joule heating. Our predictive modeling and simulation results can be used by both theorists and experimentalists to explore the interplay of SOT and the order dynamics in Mn3Sn and to further benchmark the device performance.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 15, 2024
  4. null (Ed.)
    Abstract Multi-functional thin films of boron (B) doped Cr 2 O 3 exhibit voltage-controlled and nonvolatile Néel vector reorientation in the absence of an applied magnetic field, H . Toggling of antiferromagnetic states is demonstrated in prototype device structures at CMOS compatible temperatures between 300 and 400 K. The boundary magnetization associated with the Néel vector orientation serves as state variable which is read via magnetoresistive detection in a Pt Hall bar adjacent to the B:Cr 2 O 3 film. Switching of the Hall voltage between zero and non-zero values implies Néel vector rotation by 90 degrees. Combined magnetometry, spin resolved inverse photoemission, electric transport and scanning probe microscopy measurements reveal B-dependent T N and resistivity enhancement, spin-canting, anisotropy reduction, dynamic polarization hysteresis and gate voltage dependent orientation of boundary magnetization. The combined effect enables H  = 0, voltage controlled, nonvolatile Néel vector rotation at high-temperature. Theoretical modeling estimates switching speeds of about 100 ps making B:Cr 2 O 3 a promising multifunctional single-phase material for energy efficient nonvolatile CMOS compatible memory applications. 
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