Indexed on: 18 Jan '16Published on: 18 Jan '16Published in: Physics - Materials Science
A d-orbital electron has an anisotropic electron orbital and is a source of magnetism. The realization of a 2-dimensional electron gas (2DEG) embedded at a LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interface surprised researchers in materials and physical sciences because the 2DEG consists of 3d-electrons of Ti with extraordinarily large carrier mobility, even in the insulating oxide heterostructure. To date, a wide variety of physical phenomena, such as ferromagnetism and the quantum Hall effect, have been discovered in this 2DEG systems, demonstrating the ability of the d-electron 2DEG systems to provide a material platform for the study of interesting physics. However, because of both ferromagnetism and the Rashba field, long-range spin transport and the exploitation of spintronics functions have been believed difficult to implement in the d-electron 2DEG systems. Here, we report the experimental demonstration of room-temperature spin transport in the d-electron-based 2DEG at a LaAlO3/SrTiO3 interface, where the spin relaxation length is ca. exceeding 200 nm. Our finding, which counters the conventional understandings to d-electron 2DEGs, opens a new field of d-electron spintronics. Furthermore, this work highlights a novel spin function in the conductive oxide system.