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  1. Abstract

    This article reports damping enhancement in a ferromagnetic NiFe thin film due to an adjacent α‐Sn thin film. Ferromagnetic resonance studies show that an α‐Sn film separated from a NiFe film by an ultrathin Ag spacer can cause an extra damping in the NiFe film that is three times bigger than the intrinsic damping of the NiFe film. Such an extra damping is absent in structures where the α‐Sn film interfaces directly with a NiFe film, or is replaced by a β‐Sn film. The data suggest that the extra damping is associated with topologically nontrivial surface states in the topological Dirac semimetal phase of the α‐Sn film. This work suggests that, like topological insulators, topological Dirac semimetal α‐Sn may have promising applications in spintronics.

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  2. We present magnetic characterization, charge resistivity, and optical photoluminescence measurements on amorphous yttrium iron oxide thin films (a-Y–Fe–O), with supporting comparisons to amorphous germanium (a-Ge) films. We measured magnetic properties with both SQUID magnetometry and polarized neutron reflectometry. These results not only confirm that a-Y–Fe–O is a disordered magnetic material with strong predominantly antiferromagnetic exchange interactions and a high degree of frustration, but also that it is best understood electrically as a disordered semiconductor. As with amorphous germanium, a-Y–Fe–O obeys expectations for variable-range hopping through localized electron states over a wide range of temperature. We also clarify the consequences of charge transport through such a semiconducting medium for non-local voltage measurements intended to probe spin transport in nominally insulating magnetic materials. We further compare non-local resistance measurements made with “quasi-dc” automated current reversal to ac measurements made with a lock-in amplifier. These show that the “quasi-dc” measurement has an effective ac current excitation with frequency up to approximately 22 Hz, and that this effective ac excitation can cause artifacts in these measurements including incorrect sign of the non-local resistance. This comprehensive investigation of non-local resistance measurements in a-Y–Fe–O shows no evidence of spin transport on micrometer length scales, which is contrary to our original work, and in line with more recent investigations by other groups. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 14, 2024
  3. Topological Dirac semimetal α-Sn exhibits unexpectedly large bilinear magnetoelectric resistance at room temperature. 
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