2019 Volume 43 Issue 6 Pages 120-124
We systematically investigated perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) in bilayers comprising ultrathin full-Heusler Co2FeSi (CFS) alloy and MgO as an insulator. The MgO layer was fabricated using two different sputtering techniques: reactive sputtering and radio-frequency sputtering. The characteristics of the layers fabricated using the different methods were compared. Irrespective of the MgO fabrication technique, the CFS/MgO bilayers exhibited PMA when the CFS surface was exposed to oxygen, which resulted in additional Fe–O bonds at the interface. Additionally, we characterized PMA in the bilayers while varying the substrate temperature TS for CFS sputtering. CFS samples that were 0.6-nm thick exhibited PMA when they were formed at TS as high as 300°C. The bilayer formed at 350°C exhibited in-plane magnetic anisotropy. Quantitative analysis of the magnetic anisotropy energy density revealed that the dominant magnetic anisotropy contribution in PMA differed between the bilayers formed at 300°C and 350°C. We expect these findings to be useful in the further development of high spin-polarized ferromagnetic electrodes containing PMA for next-generation spintronics devices.