External-Field-Free Spin Hall Switching of Perpendicular Magnetic Nanopillar with a Dipole-Coupled Composite Structure

Zhengyang Zhao, Angeline K. Smith, Mahdi Jamali, Jian Ping Wang

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29 Scopus citations


Spin Hall effect (SHE)-induced reversal of perpendicular magnetization has attracted significant interest, due to its potential for low-power memory and logic devices. However, the switching requires an assisted in-plane magnetic field, which hampers its practical applications. Here, a new approach for external-field-free spin Hall switching of a perpendicular nanomagnet is introduced. This approach utilizes a local dipolar field arising from an in-plane biasing layer to assist the switching. Robust switching of a 285 × 95 nm2 perpendicular CoFeB nanomagnet is demonstrated in the absence of any external magnetic field. Micromagnetic simulation is performed to illustrate the magnetic dynamics of the switching process. Large in-plane compensation field of 135 Oe is obtained in the composite nanodevices, reflecting a strong symmetry-breaking behavior. Compared with other proposed methods for external-field-free spin Hall switching, the dipole-coupled composite structure is compatible with a wide range of spin Hall systems and perpendicular magnetic tunnel junctions, paving a way towards practical spin–orbit torque-based memory and logic applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1901368
JournalAdvanced Electronic Materials
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim


  • MRAM
  • perpendicular magnetic anisotropy
  • spin Hall effect
  • spintronics
  • spin−orbit torque


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