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Effects of magnetostriction and superlattice formation in ferromagnetic thin films


Johnson, Gordon Oliver (1972) Effects of magnetostriction and superlattice formation in ferromagnetic thin films. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/DYFK-DQ28.


The contribution to the magnetic uniaxial perpendicular anisotropy which arises from substrate constraint through magnetostrictive effects has been measured in Ni-Fe and Ni-Co thin films evaporated on substrates at room temperature. This was accomplished by measuring the perpendicular anisotropy before and after removal of the film from the substrate. Data are given for the fcc crystal structure regions of both alloy systems, but data for Ni-Co include compositions with less than 60% Ni which have a small percentage of the hcp phase mixed with the fcc phase. The constraint contribution to the perpendicular anisotropy correlates well with the value of the bulk magnetostriction constant using the equation ∆K˔=3/2λsσ. Measured values of isotropic stress for films thicker than 600 Å were 1.6 x 1010 dyn/cm2. In films less than 600 Å thick the isotropic stress decreased with decreasing thickness. After removal of the films from the substrates, the measured perpendicular anisotropy deviated from the expected geometrical shape anisotropy near pure Ni in both alloys. This indicates that additional significant sources of anisotropy exist at these compositions.

The effect of substrate constraint on the crystalline anisotropy K1 of Ni-Fe epitaxial films has been studied by use of a film removal technique, which involves the evaporation of an epitaxial layer of LiF on MgO, the epitaxial growth of the metallic film on the LiF, and the stripping of the film with water soluble tape. Films ranging in composition from 50% to 100% Ni have been studied. For compositions below 90% Ni the experimental values agree reasonably well with the first order theoretical prediction, ∆K1=[-9/4(C11-C122 100+9/2C44λ2111].

In order to compare the magnetic properties of epitaxial thin films more completely with the properties of bulk single crystals, Ni-Fe films ranging in composition from 60% to 90% Ni, which were evaporated epitaxially on (100) MgO substrates, have been subsequently annealed at 400°C in a vacuum of less than 10-7 Torr to form the ordered Ni3Fe structure near the 75% composition. This ordered structure has been confirmed by electron diffraction.

The saturation magnetization at Ni3Fe increased about 6% with ordering which is in good agreement with previous bulk data. Measurements of the magnetocrystalline anisotropy energy K1 for the epitaxial films show the same large changes with ordering as observed in bulk single crystal samples. In the (001) plane the magnetostriction constants λ100, λ111 are directly related to the induced anisotropy due to a uniform uniaxial strain in the [100] and [110] directions respectively. Assuming that the elastic constants of a film are the same as in bulk material and are unchanged by ordering, the changes in strain sensitivity with ordering for the epitaxial films are found to be in good agreement with values predicted from bulk data. The exchange constant A as measured by ferromagnetic resonance has been measured at the Ni3Fe composition and found to increase 25% with ordering. This seems to indicate a significant increase in the Curie temperature which has only been inferred indirectly for bulk material.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Electrical Engineering
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Electrical Engineering
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Wilts, Charles H. (advisor)
  • Humphrey, Floyd Bernard (advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:16 March 1972
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Ford FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:04182016-145345048
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:9679
Deposited On:20 Apr 2016 21:03
Last Modified:09 Nov 2022 19:20

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