Chapter — Spin valves

B. Diény, Spin valves, 67-149, Ch.2, Magnetoelectronics (2004). DOI: 10.1016/B978-012088487-2/50003-0

I) Introduction

II) Giant magnetoresistance
A. Giant magnetoresistance effect
B. Semi-classical theory of giant magnetoresistance
C. Current-perpendicuar-to-plane giant magnetoresistance

III) Basic properties of spin-valves
A. Spin-valves
B. Magnetic properties :
-1. Exchange anisotropy
-2. Interlayer coupling
C. Current-in-plane transport properties :
-1. Influence of the thickness of the ferromagnetic layer
-2. Influence of the thickness of the non-magnetic spacer layer
-3. Influence of temperature on the current-in-plane giant magnetoresistance
-4. Angular variation of giant magnetoresistance

IV) spin-valves optimization
A. Structural improvements achieved with NiFeCr buffer layers
B. Improvement in the pinning related to the use of a synthetic pinned layer
C. Improvement in the magnetoresistance amplitude obtained by Co or CoFe interfacial
D. Effect of specular reflection on MR amplitude
E. Improved spin-valves designs :
-1. Dual spin-valves
-2. Spin-filter spin-valves

V) Directions to further improve the Current-in-plane magnetoresistance in spin-valves

VI) Spin-valves in magnetoresistive read-heads : Today’s technology and trends
A. Principle of magnetic recording
B. Biasing of spin-valves heads
C. Current distribution and magnetic field
D. Signal to noise ratio in spin-valve elements
E. CPP heads based on magnetic tunnel junctions
F. CPP heads based on metallic multilayers
G. Spin transfer effects in CPP magnetoresistive heads


VIII) Conclusion

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