Heusler alloys show great promise for use in spintronic devices
due to their predicted half-metallic band structure. These materials behave
like metals with respect to the electrons of one spin direction and like
semiconductors with respect to the electrons of the other spin direction.
The main advantages of Heusler materials with respect to other half-metallic
systems are their relatively high Cuire temperature, e.g. for Co2MnSi it reaches 985 K. Using the heusler thin films as electrodes for magnetic
tunnel junctions (MTJs), very large room temperature tunnel magnetoresistance
(TMR) values have been achieved. Recently, Half-metallic ferrimagnetic
Heusler alloys like Mn2VAl, where Mn and V atoms have antiparallel spin moments, attracted peoplefs
particular interest since they can create smaller stray magnetic fields
and thus lead to lower critical current density for spin transfer torque
In our group, we are investigating on which heusler thin film is ideally
suitable and what are the best preparation parameters for STT switching
effect based devices. We hope our research will help to push forward a
better understanding of this very interesting class of materials, which
have a great potential to revolutionize spintronic devices.