Magnetic-dichroism study of iron silicides formed at the Fe/Si(100) interface
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The interplay between the phase composition, electronic structure, and magnetic properties of the Fe/Si(100)2×1 interface has been studied at the initial stages of its formation (at Fe doses up to 8 Å). The experiments were carried out in ultra high vacuum by using high-resolution photoelectron spectroscopy with synchrotron radiation. The interface magnetic properties were examined in terms of magnetic linear dichroism in angle-resolved Fe 3p core-level photoemission. It was found that at room temperature a disordered Fe–Si solid solution is formed at the first stage of Fe deposition (≤3.4 Å). In the coverage range of 3.4–4.3 Å the solid solution transforms into Fe3Si. However, the in-plane ferromagnetic ordering of the silicide occurs only at 6.8 Å Fe that demonstrates the thickness dependence of the magnetic properties of Fe3Si. The subsequent sample annealing to 150°C transforms Fe3Si to ε-FeSi, leading to the disappearance of ferromagnetic behavior.