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Low Resistance Spin-dependent Tunnel Junctions Deposited With A Vacuum Break And Radio Frequency Plasma Oxidized

J. Sun, V. Soares, P. Freitas
Published 1999 · Physics

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Spin-dependent tunnel junctions with resistance-area products (RJ×A) down to 1.8 kΩ×μm2 and tunneling magnetoresistance (TMR)⩾15% were fabricated. Junction areas vary from 6 to 45 μm2. A systematic study of junction resistance and TMR versus deposited Al thickness (tAl=7, 9, 11, and 13 A), and oxidation time (from 4 to 90 s) is presented. The TMR is maximum (25% to 27%) for tAl=11 A, with 6 s oxidation time (RJ×A=10 to 20 kΩ×μm2). At 6–10 s oxidation time, reducing the Al thickness from 11 to 7 A reduces the resistance-area products from 10–20 kΩ×μm2 to 1–3 kΩ×μm2, while TMR decreases from 22%–27% to 13%–17%. Excess oxidation or incomplete oxidation of the Al layer leads to current–voltage curve asymmetry.Spin-dependent tunnel junctions with resistance-area products (RJ×A) down to 1.8 kΩ×μm2 and tunneling magnetoresistance (TMR)⩾15% were fabricated. Junction areas vary from 6 to 45 μm2. A systematic study of junction resistance and TMR versus deposited Al thickness (tAl=7, 9, 11, and 13 A), and oxidation time (from 4 to 90 s) is presented. The TMR is maximum (25% to 27%) for tAl=11 A, with 6 s oxidation time (RJ×A=10 to 20 kΩ×μm2). At 6–10 s oxidation time, reducing the Al thickness from 11 to 7 A reduces the resistance-area products from 10–20 kΩ×μm2 to 1–3 kΩ×μm2, while TMR decreases from 22%–27% to 13%–17%. Excess oxidation or incomplete oxidation of the Al layer leads to current–voltage curve asymmetry.
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