The tunnel magnetoresistance (TMR) effect and the bias voltage dependence of tunnelling conductance spectra were measured in L10 Mn-Ga/Fe/MgO/CoFe magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs). The TMR ratio and bias-voltage dependences on annealing conditions and Fe-layer thickness were investigated. The TMR ratio showed an increase subsequent to Fe-layer deposition under the optimum annealing condition, and a maximum value of 24% was achieved in an MTJ with a perpendicularly magnetized Fe layer of thickness of 1.1 nm at room temperature; this corresponded to a 57% TMR ratio in the case of completely antiparallel magnetization configuration. In the tunnelling conductance spectra, an anomalous dip, the so-called zero-bias anomaly, was observed for all the samples. The zero-bias anomaly is speculated to have appeared because of an increase in magnon excitation at the magnetic layer/barrier interfaces according to the model by Zhang et al (1997 Phys. Rev. Lett. 79 3744). In our experiments magnitude of the zero-bias anomaly depended on both the annealing condition and the Fe-layer thickness. We discuss our observation of the variation in the Curie temperature of the magnetic layer at the barrier layer interface depending on the the preparation conditions of the Fe insertion layer, which caused the change in the magnitude of the zero-bias anomaly.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Condensed Matter Physics
- Acoustics and Ultrasonics
- Surfaces, Coatings and Films