Indexed on: 30 Jan '15Published on: 30 Jan '15Published in: Nature communications
Exchange coupled CoFe/BiFeO3 thin-film heterostructures show great promise for power-efficient electric field-induced 180° magnetization switching. However, the coupling mechanism and precise qualification of the exchange coupling in CoFe/BiFeO3 heterostructures have been elusive. Here we show direct evidence for electric field control of the magnetic state in exchange coupled CoFe/BiFeO3 through electric field-dependent ferromagnetic resonance spectroscopy and nanoscale spatially resolved magnetic imaging. Scanning electron microscopy with polarization analysis images reveal the coupling of the magnetization in the CoFe layer to the canted moment in the BiFeO3 layer. Electric field-dependent ferromagnetic resonance measurements quantify the exchange coupling strength and reveal that the CoFe magnetization is directly and reversibly modulated by the applied electric field through a ~180° switching of the canted moment in BiFeO3. This constitutes an important step towards robust repeatable and non-volatile voltage-induced 180° magnetization switching in thin-film multiferroic heterostructures and tunable RF/microwave devices.