We present results on the magneto-optic properties of ferromagnetic films deposited on GaAs and SiO2 substrates. Using left- and right-circularly polarized light, we have measured the polarization-dependent photoresponse and reflectivity of Co/GaAs, Fe/GaAs and NiFe/GaAs Schottky diodes and the polarization-dependent reflection and transmission of NiFe/SiO 2 and Co/SiO2 structures as a function of ferromagnetic film thickness, reported here in the range of 7.5-15 nm. Films were prepared by sputtering and molecular-beam epitaxy. Measurements were made in the presence of magnetic fields ranging from -1.2 to +1.2 T both parallel and perpendicular to the sample surface. We find maximum polarization-dependent transmission and photoresponse effects (with respect to left- versus right-circularly polarized light) of 2-4% in magnitude. Taken together the work suggests that magneto-optic effects intrinsic to the films, rather than spin injection across the ferromagnetic/semiconductor interface, are responsible for the observed phenomenology. The work has direct implications for the interpretation of results in ferromagnetic/semiconductor spintronic systems.
- Thin films
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering