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The European Physical Journal B

, Volume 59, Issue 4, pp 463–469 | Cite as

Hard axis magnetic field dependence on current-induced magnetization switching in MgO-based magnetic tunnel junctions

  • Y. SaitoEmail author
  • T. Inokuchi
  • H. Sugiyama
  • K. Inomata
Topical Issue on New Trends in Spin Transfer Physics

Abstract.

We conducted a detailed study of hard axis magnetic field (Hhard) dependence on current-induced magnetization switching (CIMS) in MgO-based magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs) with various junction sizes and various uniaxial anisotropy fields. The decreases in critical current density (Jc) and the intrinsic critical current density (Jc0) estimated from the pulse duration dependence on Jc in CIMS are observed when applying Hhard for all MTJs. The decrease in energy barrier of CIMS is also observed except for the largest sample. These results indicate that the reduction of Jc is attributable to both the increase of spin-transfer efficiency and the decrease in energy barrier in the case of applying Hhard. The Jc0 decreases with increase in the mutual angle between the direction of magnetization and the easy axis (θf), which is consistent with the theoretical prediction proposed by Slonczewski. The degree of the reduction of Jc0 for the same value of Hhard decreases with decreasing size of MTJs. This behavior is considered to be related to not only decrease in θf due to the increase in anisotropy field in MTJs, but also to the increase in the variance of the initial angle of magnetization due to the thermally activated magnon excitation. The stable switching endurance related to CIMS was observed in a wide range of MTJ sizes when applying Hhard. Moreover, we proposed a new architecture and a new switching method considering write disturbance. These results would be useful for application to spin memory and other spin-electronic devices.

PACS.

72.25.-b Spin polarized transport 72.25.Hg Electrical injection of spin polarized carriers 73.43.Qt Magnetoresistance 73.63.-b Electronic transport in nanoscale materials and structures 75.47.-m Magnetotransport phenomena; materials for magnetotransport 

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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences/Società Italiana di Fisica/Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Y. Saito
    • 1
    Email author
  • T. Inokuchi
    • 1
  • H. Sugiyama
    • 1
  • K. Inomata
    • 2
  1. 1.Corporate R & D Center, Toshiba Corporation, 212-8582 Kawasaki, Japan and CREST, Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST), Kawaguchi, 332-0012SaitamaJapan
  2. 2.National Institute for Materials ScienceSaitamaJapan

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