Thermal stability of magnetic tunnel junctions studied by x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy

David J. Keavney, Sungkyun Park, Charles M Falco, J. M. Slaughter

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Abstract

We have studied the evolution of chemical state of the metallic layers in NiFe/Al oxide/NiFe tunnel junction structures in as-deposited films and after postdeposition annealing. Both top and bottom NiFe layers in as-deposited films show significant Fe oxidation, but no Ni oxidation. This Fe is reduced in annealed samples, implying that oxygen migrates from the FeNi layers, possibly into the Al oxide layer. We also find that both top and bottom electrodes are significantly oxidized even in optimally annealed films.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)234-236
Number of pages3
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Volume78
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 8 2001

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

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