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Magnetic Structure Determination for Annealed Ni80Fe20/Ag Multilayers Using Polarized-Neutron Reflectivity

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 February 2011

J.A. Borchers
Affiliation:
National Institute of Standards and Technology, Reactor Radiation Division, Gaithersburg, MD 20899
P.M. Gehring
Affiliation:
National Institute of Standards and Technology, Reactor Radiation Division, Gaithersburg, MD 20899
C.F. Majkrzak
Affiliation:
National Institute of Standards and Technology, Reactor Radiation Division, Gaithersburg, MD 20899
J.F. Ankner
Affiliation:
University of Missouri, Research Reactor Facility, Columbia, MO 65211
T.L. Hylton
Affiliation:
IBM Storage Systems Division, 5600 Cottle Road, San Jose, CA 95193
K.R. Coffey
Affiliation:
IBM Storage Systems Division, 5600 Cottle Road, San Jose, CA 95193
M.A. Parker
Affiliation:
IBM Storage Systems Division, 5600 Cottle Road, San Jose, CA 95193
J.K. Howard
Affiliation:
IBM Storage Systems Division, 5600 Cottle Road, San Jose, CA 95193
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Abstract

Sputtered Ni80Fe20/Ag multilayers, annealed post-growth, show giant magnetoresistive (GMR) effects at unusually low magnetic fields (≈ 5 Oe)[l]. Structural characterization by cross-sectional TEM[2] and x-ray diffraction indicates that the Ag preferentially diffuses into the Ni80Fe20 layers at the interfaces. Using polarized-neutron specular reflectivity, we have obtained magnetization depth profiles for a series of annealed [Ni8oFe2o(20Å)/Ag(40Å)]4 multilayers. Though GMR in related materials is associated with coherent antiferromagnetic alignment of the ferromagnetic layers, specular neutron data for the Ni80Fe20/Ag multilayers show no trace of half-order spin-flip intensity characteristic of this simple structure. In small applied fields, transverse scans at the half-order position show a broad feature which disappears upon saturation. These data suggest that while the Ni80Fe20 moments are antiferromagnetically correlated along the growth axis, the in-plane magnetic domains are only of micron-order size and are thus not apparent in a specular measurement.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 1995

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References

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Magnetic Structure Determination for Annealed Ni80Fe20/Ag Multilayers Using Polarized-Neutron Reflectivity
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