Phase boundary exchange coupling in the mixed magnetic phase regime of a Pd-doped FeRh epilayer

J. R. Massey, K. Matsumoto, M. Strungaru, R. C. Temple, T. Higo, K. Kondou, R. F.L. Evans, G. Burnell, R. W. Chantrell, Y. Otani, C. H. Marrows

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Spin-wave resonance measurements were performe in the mixed magnetic phase regime of a Pd-doped FeRh epilayer that appears as the first-order ferromagnetic-antiferromagnetic phase transition takes place. It is seen that the measured value of the exchange stiffness is suppressed throughout the measurement range when compared to the expected value of the fully ferromagnetic regime, extracted via the independent means of a measurement of the Curie point, for only slight changes in the ferromagnetic volume fraction. This behavior is attributed to the influence of the antiferromagnetic phase: inspired by previous experiments that show ferromagnetism to be most persistent at the surfaces and interfaces of FeRh thin films, we modelled the antiferromagnetic phase as forming a thin layer in the middle of the epilayer through which the two ferromagnetic layers are coupled up to a certain critical thickness. The development of this exchange stiffness is then consistent with that expected from the development of an exchange coupling across the magnetic phase boundary, as a consequence of a thickness dependent phase transition taking place in the antiferromagnetic regions and is supported by complimentary computer simulations of atomistic spin-dynamics. The development of the Gilbert damping parameter extracted from the ferromagnetic resonance investigations is consistent with this picture.

Original languageEnglish
Article number024403
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 6 Feb 2020

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