Interface Engineering to Create a Strong Spin Filter Contact to Silicon
2016-03-15, Caspers, Christian, Gloskovskii, Andrei, Gorgoi, Mihaela, Besson, Claire, Luysberg, Martina, Rushchanskii, Konstantin Z., Ležaić, Marjana, Fadley, Charles S., Drube, Wolfgang, Müller, Martina
Integrating epitaxial and ferromagnetic Europium Oxide (EuO) directly on silicon is a perfect route to enrich silicon nanotechnology with spin filter functionality. To date, the inherent chemical reactivity between EuO and Si has prevented a heteroepitaxial integration without significant contaminations of the interface with Eu silicides and Si oxides. We present a solution to this long-standing problem by applying two complementary passivation techniques for the reactive EuO/Si interface: (i) an in situ hydrogen-Si (001) passivation and (ii) the application of oxygen-protective Eu monolayers-without using any additional buffer layers. By careful chemical depth profiling of the oxide-semiconductor interface via hard x-ray photoemission spectroscopy, we show how to systematically minimize both Eu silicide and Si oxide formation to the sub-monolayer regime-and how to ultimately interface-engineer chemically clean, heteroepitaxial and ferromagnetic EuO/Si (001) in order to create a strong spin filter contact to silicon.