Indexed on: 28 Nov '15Published on: 28 Nov '15Published in: Journal of physics. Condensed matter : an Institute of Physics journal
In this paper, we report on a purely electric mechanism for achieving the electric control of the interfacial spin polarization and magnetoresistance in multiferroic tunneling junctions. We investigate micrometric devices based on the Co/Fe/BaTiO3/La0.7Sr0.3MnO3 heterostructure, where Co/Fe and La0.7Sr0.3MnO3 are the magnetic electrodes and BaTiO3 acts both as a ferroelectric element and tunneling barrier. We show that, at 20 K, devices with a 2 nm thick BaTiO3 barrier present both tunneling electroresistance (TER = 12 ± 0.1%) and tunneling magnetoresistance (TMR). The latter depends on the direction of the BaTiO3 polarization, displaying a sizable change of the TMR from -0.32 ± 0.05% for the polarization pointing towards Fe, to -0.12 ± 0.05% for the opposite direction. This is consistent with the on-off switching of the Fe magnetization at the Fe/BaTiO3 interface, driven by the BaTiO3 polarization, we have previously demonstrated in x-ray magnetic circular dichroism experiments.