textcopyright 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd. By using first-principles calculations we show that the spin-polarization reverses its sign at atomically abrupt interfaces between the half-metallic Co 2 (Fe,Mn)(Al,Si) and Si(1 1 1). This unfavourable spin-electronic configuration at the Fermi-level can be completely removed by introducing a Si-Co-Si monolayer at the interface. In addition, this interfacial monolayer shifts the Fermi-level from the valence band edge close to the conduction band edge of Si. We show that such a layer is energetically favourable to exist at the interface. This was further confirmed by direct observations of CoSi 2 nano-islands at the interface, by employing atomic resolution scanning transmission electron microscopy.
Bibliographical note© 2016 IOP Publishing Ltd
- Heusler alloys,half-metals,spin-injection,spintronics