From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion

Kuschel O, Buß R, Spiess W, Schemme T, Wöllermann J, Balinski K, N'Diaye AT, Kuschel T, Wollschläger J, Kuepper K (2016)
Physical Review B 94(9): 094423.

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Abstract
Ferrites with (inverse) spinel structure display a large variety of electronic and magnetic properties, making some of them interesting for potential applications in spintronics. We investigate the thermally induced interdiffusion of Ni2+ ions out of NiO into Fe3O4 ultrathin films, resulting in off-stoichiometric nickel ferrite–like thin layers. We synthesized epitaxial Fe3O4/NiO bilayers on Nb-doped SrTiO3(001) substrates by means of reactive molecular beam epitaxy. Subsequently, we performed an annealing cycle comprising three steps at temperatures of 400°C, 600°C and 800°C under an oxygen background atmosphere. We studied the changes of the chemical and electronic properties as result of each annealing step with help of hard x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy and found a rather homogeneous distribution of Ni and Fe cations throughout the entire film after the overall annealing cycle. For one sample we observed a cationic distribution close to that of the spinel ferrite NiFe2O4. Further evidence comes from low-energy electron diffraction patterns indicating a spinel-type structure at the surface after annealing. Site- and element-specific hysteresis loops performed by x-ray magnetic circular dichroism uncovered the antiferrimagnetic alignment between the octahedral coordinated Ni2+ and Fe3+ ions and the Fe3+ ion in tetrahedral coordination. We find a quite low coercive field of 0.02 T, indicating a rather low defect concentration within the thin ferrite films.
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Kuschel O, Buß R, Spiess W, et al. From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion. Physical Review B. 2016;94(9): 094423.
Kuschel, O., Buß, R., Spiess, W., Schemme, T., Wöllermann, J., Balinski, K., N'Diaye, A. T., et al. (2016). From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion. Physical Review B, 94(9): 094423.
Kuschel, O., Buß, R., Spiess, W., Schemme, T., Wöllermann, J., Balinski, K., N'Diaye, A. T., Kuschel, T., Wollschläger, J., and Kuepper, K. (2016). From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion. Physical Review B 94:094423.
Kuschel, O., et al., 2016. From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion. Physical Review B, 94(9): 094423.
O. Kuschel, et al., “From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion”, Physical Review B, vol. 94, 2016, : 094423.
Kuschel, O., Buß, R., Spiess, W., Schemme, T., Wöllermann, J., Balinski, K., N'Diaye, A.T., Kuschel, T., Wollschläger, J., Kuepper, K.: From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion. Physical Review B. 94, : 094423 (2016).
Kuschel, O., Buß, R., Spiess, W., Schemme, T., Wöllermann, J., Balinski, K., N'Diaye, A. T., Kuschel, Timo, Wollschläger, J., and Kuepper, K. “From Fe3O4/NiO bilayers to NiFe2O4-like thin films through Ni interdiffusion”. Physical Review B 94.9 (2016): 094423.
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