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Giant gate-controlled proximity magnetoresistance in semiconductor-based ferromagnetic–non-magnetic bilayers

Abstract

The evolution of information technology has been driven by the discovery of new forms of large magnetoresistance, such as giant magnetoresistance1,2 and tunnelling magnetoresistance3,4, in magnetic multilayers. Recently, new types of this effect have been observed in much simpler bilayers consisting of ferromagnetic and non-magnetic thin films5,6,7,8,9,10. However, the magnitude of the change in resistance with magnetic field in these materials is very small, varying between 0.01 and 1%. Here, we demonstrate that non-magnetic–ferromagnetic bilayers consisting of a conducting non-magnetic InAs quantum well and an insulating ferromagnetic (Ga,Fe)Sb layer exhibit giant proximity magnetoresistance of approximately 80% at high magnetic field, and that its magnitude can be controlled by a gate. The mechanism for this large magnetoresistance is a strong magnetic proximity effect. The spin splitting in the InAs quantum well induced by the magnetic proximity effect can be varied between 0.17 meV and 3.8 meV by varying the gate voltage. In principle, this provides a mechanism to locally access Majorana fermions in InAs-based Josephson junctions11,12,13,14 and introduces a new concept of magnetic-gating spin transistors in which the non-magnetic channel current is modulated by both electrical and magnetic means.

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Fig. 1: Device structure, microstructure characterization and magnetotransport.
Fig. 2: Dependence of PMR on the magnetic field direction and strength.
Fig. 3: Theoretical model, fitting and gate voltage dependence of PMR.
Fig. 4: Transistor operation of the FET device fabricated on the InAs/(Ga,Fe)Sb bilayer in sample B.

Data availability

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding authors on reasonable request.

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Acknowledgements

A part of this work was conducted at Advanced Characterization Nanotechnology Platform of the University of Tokyo, supported by ‘Nanotechnology Platform’ of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT), Japan. Funding: this work was partly supported by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research (numbers 16H02095, 17H04922, 18H05345), the CREST Program (JPMJCR1777) of the Japan Science and Technology Agency, Yazaki Memorial Foundation for Science and Technology, and the Spintronics Research Network of Japan (Spin-RNJ).

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Contributions

K.T. and L.D.A. designed the experiments and grew the samples. K.T. performed sample characterizations and transport properties. K.T., D.C. and T.K. fabricated the FET devices. K.T., L.D.A. and T.C. discussed the mechanism and performed theoretical calculations. K.T., L.D.A. and M.T. planned the study and wrote the manuscript.

Corresponding authors

Correspondence to Le Duc Anh or Masaaki Tanaka.

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Supplementary Information

Supplementary Figs. 1–5, Tables 1–3, Notes 1 and 2, and refs. 1–20.

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Takiguchi, K., Anh, L.D., Chiba, T. et al. Giant gate-controlled proximity magnetoresistance in semiconductor-based ferromagnetic–non-magnetic bilayers. Nat. Phys. 15, 1134–1139 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41567-019-0621-6

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