Spin colossal magnetoresistance in an antiferromagnetic insulator

Zhiyong Qiu, Dazhi Hou, Joseph Barker, Kei Yamamoto, Olena Gomonay, Eiji Saitoh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


Colossal magnetoresistance (CMR) refers to a large change in electrical conductivity induced by a magnetic field in the vicinity of a metal-insulator transition and has inspired extensive studies for decades 1,2 . Here we demonstrate an analogous spin effect near the Néel temperature, T N = 296 K, of the antiferromagnetic insulator Cr2O3. Using a yttrium iron garnet YIG/Cr2O3/Pt trilayer, we injected a spin current from the YIG into the Cr2O3 layer and collected, via the inverse spin Hall effect, the spin signal transmitted into the heavy metal Pt. We observed a two orders of magnitude difference in the transmitted spin current within 14 K of the Néel temperature. This transition between spin conducting and non-conducting states was also modulated by a magnetic field in isothermal conditions. This effect, which we term spin colossal magnetoresistance (SCMR), has the potential to simplify the design of fundamental spintronics components, for instance, by enabling the realization of spin-current switches or spin-current-based memories.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)577-580
Number of pages4
JournalNature Materials
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Jul 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering


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