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Texture Effects in IrMn/CoFe Exchange Bias Systems

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7 Author(s)
Aley, N.P. ; Dept. of Phys., Univ. of York, York ; Vallejo-Fernandez, G. ; Kroeger, R. ; Lafferty, B.
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We report an enhancement of the average blocking temperature <TB> in IrMn/CoFe exchange bias systems due to an increase in the anisotropy constant of the IrMn. This is related to a (111) texture of IrMn parallel to the interface. Si<100>/Seed (5 nm)/IrMn (10 nm)/CoFe (3 nm)/Ta (10 nm) were prepared by dc sputtering. Cu, Ru, and NiCr seed layers were used. X-ray diffraction studies involving both thetas/2thetas and grazing incidence scans revealed a strong (111) texture of the IrMn parallel to the interface for the samples with a NiCr seed layer. Cu and Ru seed layers did not cause a marked texture. Thermal activation measurements found an enhancement of the average blocking temperature from 367 K for the sample with Cu seed layer to 477 K for the sample with a NiCr seed. The anisotropy constant was found to increase from (2.8plusmn0.2) times 106 erg/cm3 for the sample with a Cu seed layer to (3.3 plusmn 0.4) times 107 erg/cm3 for the sample with a NiCr seed layer. We find that the increase in the anisotropy constant leads to an enhanced blocking temperature.

Published in:

Magnetics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:44 ,  Issue: 11 )

Date of Publication:

Nov. 2008

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