We grew ferromagnetic Fe4N films by molecular beam epitaxy on MgO(001), MgAl2O4(MAO)(001), SrTiO3(STO)(001), and CaF2(001) substrates, possessing the lattice spacing close to Si(001) plane. Highly oriented epitaxial growth was confirmed for the Fe4N films on the MgO, MAO, and STO by reflection high-energy electron diffraction and x-ray diffractions. The degree of orientation of the Fe4N film on the STO was the best among these samples. This was attributed to the smallest lattice mismatch of −2.8% between Fe4N(001) and STO(001). On the other hand, crystallinity of the Fe4N film on the CaF2(001) substrate was poor due to a very large lattice mismatch of −30% between Fe4N(001) and CaF2(001) arising from the unexpected epitaxial relationship as Fe4N(001) || CaF2(001). The saturation magnetization of the Fe4N films was approximately 1200 emu/cm3 at room temperature for all the samples, and the magnetization easy axis was in-plane Fe4N. We consider that STO is the suitable buffer layer for the growth of Fe4N on Si(001), hence to realize the Si-based spintronics devices using highly spin-polarized Fe4N.
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