Crystallinity Control of Ferromagnetic Contacts in Stressed Nanowire Templates and the Magnetic Domain Anisotropy

Y.-C. Lin, Y. Chen, R. Chen, K. Ghosh, Q. Xiong and Y. Huang

Nano Lett. 12, 4341-4348 (2012)


We report the controlled growth of single-crystalline ferromagnetic contacts through solid state reaction at nanoscale. Single-crystal Mn5Si3 and Fe5Ge3 contacts were grown within stressed Si and Ge nanowire templates, where oxide-shells were used to exert compressive stress on the silicide or germanide. Compared to polycrystalline silicide and germanide structures observed within bare nanowires, the built-in high strain in the oxide-shelled nanostructures alters the nucleation behavior of the ferromagnetic materials, leading to single crystal growth in the transverse/radial direction. Interestingly, the compressive stress is also found to affect the magnetic anisotropy of the ferromagnetic contacts. In-plane and out-of-plane magnetization were observed in Fe5Ge3 for different crystal orientations, showing distinctly preferred domain orientations. These interesting results display the capability to control both the crystallinity and the magnetic anisotropy of ferromagnetic contacts in engineered nanostructures.
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