Influence of interface alloying on the magnetic properties of Co/Pd multilayers

Carrey, J.; Berkowitz, A.E.; Egelhoff Jr., W.F.; Smith, David J.
December 2003
Applied Physics Letters;12/22/2003, Vol. 83 Issue 25, p5259
Academic Journal
The origin of perpendicular anisotropy in Co/Pd multilayers has been investigated. We examined this question by studying multilayers in which the total equivalent thicknesses of Co and Pd are kept constant, but in which the Co/Pd interface is progressively alloyed using codeposition of the two elements. The multilayers have the structure: [(0.3 nm Co codeposited with y nm Pd)/(2.0-y) nm Pd][sub 15], with y=0, 0.1, 0.3, 0.5, 1, 1.5, 2.0. X-ray diffraction confirms that the total thicknesses of the samples and their overall Co/Pd ratios stay constant. Magnetic properties are almost unaffected by alloying up to y=0.5 nm, suggesting that the interface of the usual Co/Pd multilayer could be modeled by a mix of 0.3 nm of Co with 0.5 nm of Pd embedded between 2 monolayers of Pd. Using this model and reasonable assumptions about the strain and magnetostriction of a Co-Pd alloy, we show that the magnetoelastic effect yields a perpendicular anisotropy between 2.3×10[sup 5] and 3.5×10[sup 5] J/m[sup 3]. The perpendicular anisotropy estimated in our samples (1.5×10[sup 5] J/m[sup 3]) can thus be satisfactorily explained. © 2003 American Institute of Physics.


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