Probing Spintronic Surfaces and Interfaces

Dr Wenqing Liu is a Reader and Head in Nano-Electronics at Royal Holloway University of London, United Kingdom. She is in Leeds to present a talk about her research.

Spintronic surfaces and interfaces give rise to a wide range of exceptional physical phenomena. Historically the spin arrangement has long been investigated within the context of conventional ferromagnetic metals (FMs) and their alloys, while the study of spin generation, relaxation, and spin-orbit coupling in non-magnetic materials has taken off recently with the advent of spintronics, and it is here that many materials and systems can find their greatest potentials in both science and technology. Here we present our latest research on a selection of spintronic surfaces and interfaces. This includes FMs, magnetic oxides (MOs), diluted magnetic semiconductor (DMSs), and magnetic topological insulators (TIs) in their ultrathin film form. FM and MO thin films have spontaneous magnetization and usually high Curie temperature, though this can be strongly altered when bonded with semiconductors (SCs). DMS have the advantage of easy integration with the existing SC-based technologies, but less robust magnetism. The magnetic ordering in TIs is even more fragile and limited to cryogenic temperatures so far, but they are particularly interesting topics due to the presence of the nontrivial surface state.