All-optical detection of interfacial spin transparency from spin pumping in β-Ta/CoFeB thin films

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Science Advances  26 Apr 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 4, eaav7200
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav7200


Generation and utilization of pure spin current have revolutionized energy-efficient spintronic devices. Spin pumping effect generates pure spin current, and for its increased efficiency, spin-mixing conductance and interfacial spin transparency are imperative. The plethora of reports available on generation of spin current with giant magnitude overlook the interfacial spin transparency. Here, we investigate spin pumping in β-Ta/CoFeB thin films by an all-optical time-resolved magneto-optical Kerr effect technique. From variation of Gilbert damping with Ta and CoFeB thicknesses, we extract the spin diffusion length of β-Ta and spin-mixing conductances. Consequently, interfacial spin transparency is derived as 0.50 ± 0.03 from the spin Hall magnetoresistance model for the β-Ta/CoFeB interface. Furthermore, invariance of Gilbert damping with Cu spacer layer thickness inserted between β-Ta and CoFeB layers confirms the absence of other interface effects including spin memory loss. This demonstrates a reliable and noninvasive way to determine interfacial spin transparency and signifies its role in generation of pure spin current by spin pumping effect.

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