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Spin-Orbit Torque Spin Memory and Spin Logic Devices

Technology #20170173

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SOT-MRAMAnisotropyMTJ
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Researchers
Jian-Ping Wang, PhD
Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
External Link (www.cems.umn.edu)
Mo Li, PhD
Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering
External Link (ece.umn.edu)
Junyang Chen
Post-Doctoral Associate, Electrical and Computer Engineering
External Link (nanospin.umn.edu)
Managed By
Kevin Nickels
Technology Licensing Officer 612-625-7289
Patent Protection

US Patent Pending

Bulk Perpendicular Magnetic Anisotropy

Composite CoFeB/Gd/CoFeB and CoFeB/Gd/Heusler stacks with bulk perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) have antiferromagnetic coupled magnetic structures and therefore a very small saturated magnetization (Ms). These stacks feature bulk perpendicular magnetic anisotropy that could be prepared onto any kind of seed layers. The design offers advantages in selecting good spin Hall channel materials to help realize efficient spin-orbit torque switching PMA devices, and the stacks obtain high TMR ratios and have good thermal stability and high spin polarization, which could be used as a free layer of perpendicular magnetic tunnel junctions (MTJs). Combining these stacks with antiferromagnetic materials (e.g., PtMn) could yield field-free spin-orbit torque switching of perpendicular MTJs. The multi-level, three-terminal, perpendicular MTJs could be directly switched by spin-orbit torque layer by layer with different current density. The design could realize ultrafast switching (due to antiferromagnetic coupling and low Ms) and also be used as a free layer for all-optical switching of MTJs.

Next Generation SOT-MRAM

Currently, designs for field-free spin-orbit torque switching materials with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy (PMA) are based on interfacial PMA, which can be hard to combine with perpendicular MTJs. This technology is the first to propose composite CoFeB/Gd/CoFeB and CoFeB/Gd/Heusler perpendicular free layers, as well as their related three-terminal field-free spin-orbit torque switching perpendicular MTJ devices. This new composite features bulk PMA, which can be prepared onto the various spin Hall channel materials. Using these composite CoFeB/Gd stacks allows design of field-free spin-orbit torque switching of three-terminal pMTJs, the leading building block for next generation SOT-MRAM and all-spin logic devices. In addition, it could help further design field-free spin-orbit torque switching of multi-level perpendicular MTJs and related 3D memory cells. This novel design can be used for spin-orbit torque-based MRAM and logic devices and is compatible with current standard CMOS technology.

BENEFITS AND FEATURES:

  • Composite CoFeB/Gd/CoFeB and CoFeB/Gd/Heusler stacks
  • Perpendicular free layers
  • Three-terminal field-free spin-orbit torque switching perpendicular MTJ devices
  • Bulk PMA
  • Compatible with current standard CMOS technology
  • Ultrafast switching (due to antiferromagnetic coupling and low Ms)
  • Potential free layer for all-optical switching of MTJs

APPLICATIONS:

  • Next generation SOT-MRAM
  • All-spin logic devices
  • Spin-orbit torque-based MRAM
  • Logic devices
  • Free layer for all-optical switching of MTJs

Phase of Development – Prototype Development