Electrical detection of coherent spin precession using the ballistic intrinsic spin Hall effect


The spin–orbit interaction in two-dimensional electron systems provides an exceptionally rich area of research. Coherent spin precession in a Rashba effective magnetic field1,2 in the channel of a spin field-effect transistor3,4 and the spin Hall effect5,6,7 are the two most compelling topics in this area. Here, we combine these effects to provide a direct demonstration of the ballistic intrinsic spin Hall effect8 and to demonstrate a technique for an all-electric measurement of the Datta–Das3 conductance oscillation, that is, the oscillation in the source–drain conductance due to spin precession. Our hybrid device has a ferromagnet electrode as a spin injector and a spin Hall detector. Results from multiple devices with different channel lengths map out two full wavelengths of the Datta–Das oscillation. We also use the original Datta–Das technique with a single device of fixed length and measure the channel conductance as the gate voltage is varied. Our experiments show that the ballistic spin Hall effect can be used for efficient injection or detection of spin polarized electrons, thereby enabling the development of an integrated spin transistor.

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Figure 1: Illustration of the spin Hall effect and experimental technique.
Figure 2: Spin precession-induced spin Hall effect.
Figure 3: Channel length dependence of the inverse spin Hall voltages.
Figure 4: Gate control of coherent spin precession in a spin-injected transistor with ISHE.


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The authors thank S.Y. Park and Y. Jo for providing the physical property measurement system. This work was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIP) (no. 2010-0017457) and the KIST Institutional Program. W.C. and H.C.K. acknowledge support from the KU-KIST Institutional Program. M.J. acknowledges support from the Office of Naval Research and the Nanoscience Institute of the Naval Research Laboratory (no. ELN02414855).

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H.C.K. planned the experiment and supervised the research. W.C. and H.C.K. fabricated the devices and collected the data. H.K., J.C. and S.H.H. contributed important ideas for sample fabrication. W.C., J.C., H.C.K. and M.J. analysed the data and wrote the manuscript with help from all co-authors.

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Correspondence to Hyun Cheol Koo.

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Choi, W., Kim, Hj., Chang, J. et al. Electrical detection of coherent spin precession using the ballistic intrinsic spin Hall effect. Nature Nanotech 10, 666–670 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1038/nnano.2015.107

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