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An all-metallic logic gate based on current-driven domain wall motion


The walls of magnetic domains can become trapped in a ferromagnetic metallic point contact when the thickness of the film and the width of the contact are less than their critical values1. The discovery that domain walls can be moved from such constrictions by a sufficiently large current has attracted considerable attention from researchers working on both fundamental research and potential applications2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12. Here we show that Invar nanocontacts fabricated on silica substrates exhibit a sharp drop in resistance with increasing bias voltage at room temperature in the absence of an applied magnetic field. Moreover, when two nanocontacts are combined in an all-metallic comparison circuit, it is possible to perform logical NOT operations. The use of electrical currents rather than applied magnetic fields to control the domain walls also reduces energy consumption and the risk of crosstalk in devices13,14.

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Figure 1: Scanning electron microscope (SEM) images of Invar circuits on silica substrates.
Figure 2: Direct current measurements showing the switching action.
Figure 3: Logic NOT gate circuit and testing results.
Figure 4: Width effects in the a.c. resistance spectra.

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We wish to thank Dongmin Chen, Enge Wang and Zheng Cui for fruitful discussions. This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (grant no.90406024-1), the Ministry of Science and Technology of China (grant nos 2006CB933000 and 2006AA03Z402) and the Knowledge Innovation Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), China.

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C.G. and K.X. conceived and designed the experiments. P.X., H.Y. and J.L. performed the experiments. C.G., K.X., P.X. and L.T. analysed the data. C.G., P.X. and K.X. co-wrote the paper. All authors discussed the results and commented on the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Ke Xia or Changzhi Gu.

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Xu, P., Xia, K., Gu, C. et al. An all-metallic logic gate based on current-driven domain wall motion. Nature Nanotech 3, 97–100 (2008).

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