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J Phys Condens Matter ; 30(31): 315804, 2018 Aug 08.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29964268


We report on artificial exchange bias created in a continuous epitaxial FePt3 film by introducing chemical disorder using a He+ beam, which features tailorable exchange bias strength through post-irradiation annealing. By design, the ferromagnetic (FM)/antiferromagnetic (AF) heterostructure exhibits stratified degrees of chemical order; however, the chemical composition and stoichiometry are invariant throughout the film volume. This uniquely allows for a consideration purely of the magnetic exchange across the FM/AF interface without the added hindrance of structural boundary parameters which inherently affect exchange bias quality. Annealing at 840 K results in the strongest exchange biased system, which displays a cross-sectional morphology of fine (<10 nm) domain structure composed of both of chemically ordered and chemically disordered domains. A magnetic model developed from fitting the characteristic polarised neutron reflectometry spectral features reveals that dual interactions can be attributed to the observed exchange bias: magnetic coupling at the FM/AF interface and also between neighbouring FM (chemically disordered) and AF (chemically ordered) domains within the nominally FM layer. Our results indicate that exchange bias is hindered at interfaces which are both chemically and magnetically perfect, while annealing can be used to balance the volume proportions of interfacial FM and AF domains to enhance the magnetic interface roughness for customisable exchange bias in mono-stoichiometric FM/AF heterostructures crafted by ion beams.

ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 10(18): 16216-16224, 2018 May 09.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-29701447


Using ion beams to locally modify material properties and subsequently drive magnetic phase transitions is rapidly gaining momentum as the technique of choice for the fabrication of magnetic nanoelements. This is because the method provides the capability to engineer in three dimensions on the nanometer length scale. This will be an important consideration for several emerging magnetic technologies (e.g., spintronic devices and racetrack and random-access memories) where device functionality will hinge on the spatial definition of the incorporated magnetic nanoelements. In this work, the fundamental sharpness of a magnetic interface formed by nanomachining FePt3 films using He+ irradiation is investigated. Through careful selection of the irradiating ion energy and fluence, room-temperature ferromagnetism is locally induced into a fractional volume of a paramagnetic (PM) FePt3 film by modifying the chemical order parameter. A combination of transmission electron microscopy, magnetometry, and polarized neutron reflectometry measurements demonstrates that the interface over which the PM-to-ferromagnetic modulation occurs in this model system is confined to a few atomic monolayers only, while the structural boundary transition is less well-defined. Using complementary density functional theory, the mechanism for the ion-beam-induced magnetic transition is elucidated and shown to be caused by an intermixing of Fe and Pt atoms in antisite defects above a threshold density.