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Microscopic and Macroscopic Spin Transport Phenomena

Murphy, Benedict Andrew (2016) Microscopic and Macroscopic Spin Transport Phenomena. PhD thesis, University of York.

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Spintronics is the field concerned with the control of electron spin. In logic devices electron charge is manipulated, in computer data storage the magnetisation of a domain is altered; spintronics offers a hybrid between the two. This could be exploited in non-volatile random access memory cells for low power data storage. All-metal Lateral spin-valve devices were fabricated by electron beam lithography to investigate spin transport phenomena. The fabrication and measurement processes were optimised and lateral spin-valve devices were successfully fabricated with spin diffusion lengths of (200±25) nm and (310±30) nm in 100 nm and 200 nm wide Copper wires respectively. Spin filtering was previously observed by patterning nano-scale wires to be laterally asymmetric. Here, nano-scale wires were patterned to have a laterally symmetric spin diffusion path. No increase in signal due to the filtering effect was observed, thus confirming the phenomenological model put forward. Also, the spin diffusion path in a lateral spin valve was split into a ring geometry. By applying a field gradient across the ring, the operational efficiency was improved by 30%. The observation of a mechanically induced spin current has been achieved for the first time. The design of an optical measurement system that rotates a sample at up to 200~Hz is presented here. Deviation in the moment on the surface of a paramagnetic Tungsten foil from the moment induced by the Barnett effect confirms that a spin current may be induced by mechanical rotation. In summary, design and development of magneto-electrical and mechano-optical measurement systems has been achieved. The improvement in the operational efficiency in lateral spin-valves could be used alongside materials such as Heusler alloys to provide cheaper efficient logic devices. The observation of a mechanically induced spin current in Tungsten precedes the future study of the effect in other paramagnetic materials, such as Platinum or Palladium.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Related URLs:
Keywords: Spintronics Spin current Lateral spin-valve Spin diffusion length
Academic Units: The University of York > Physics (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.702664
Depositing User: Mr Benedict Andrew Murphy
Date Deposited: 31 Jan 2017 15:13
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:21
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/15520

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