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Depth-Adjustable Magnetostructural Phase Transition in Fe₆₀V₄₀ Thin Films

Anwar, M. S.; Cansever, H.; Boehm, B.; Gallardo, R.; Hübner, R.; Zhou, S.; Kentsch, U.; Rauls, S.; Eggert, B.; Wende, H.; Potzger, K.; Faßbender, J.; Lenz, K.; Lindner, J.; Hellwig, O.; Bali, R.


Phase transitions occurring within spatially confined regions can be useful for generating nanoscale material property modulations. Here we describe a magneto-structural phase transition in a binary alloy, where a structural transition from short range order (SRO) to body centered cubic (bcc) results in the formation of depth-adjustable ferromagnetic layers, which reveal application-relevant magnetic properties of high saturation magnetitzation (Ms) and low Gilbert damping (α). Here we use Fe₆₀V₄₀ binary alloy films which transform from initially Ms = 17 kA/m (SRO structure) to 747 kA/m (bcc structure) driven by atomic displacements caused by penetrating ions. Simulations show that estimated ~1 displacement per atom triggers a structural transition, forming homogeneous ferromagnetic layers. The thickness of ferromagnetic layer increases as a step-like function of the ion-fluence. Microwave excitations of the ferromagnetic/non-ferromagnetic layered system reveals an α = 0.0027 ± 0.0001. The combination of nanoscale spatial confinement, low α and high Ms provide a pathway for the rapid patterning of magnetic and microwave device elements.

Keywords: Magneto-structural correlations; Phase transitions; Magnetic thin films; Ion-irradiation; Short-range order

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