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Origin of Contact Resistance at Ferromagnetic Metal-Graphene Interfaces

TitleOrigin of Contact Resistance at Ferromagnetic Metal-Graphene Interfaces
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsKhoo, Khoong Hong, Leong Wei Sun, Thong John T. L., and Quek Su Ying
JournalACS Nano
Date Published12/2016
Keywordscontact resistance, devices, edge contacts, ferromagnet, graphene, layer graphene, spin, spin filtering, spin transmission, temperature

Edge contact geometries are thought to yield ultralow contact resistances in most nonferromagnetic metal-graphene interfaces, owing to their large metal-graphene coupling strengths. Here, we examine the contact resistance of edge-versus surface-contacted ferromagnetic metal-graphene interfaces (i.e., nickel- and cobalt-graphene interfaces) using both single-layer and few-layer graphene. Good qualitative agreement is obtained between theory and experiment. In particular, in both theory and experiment, we observe that the contact resistance of edge-contacted ferromagnetic metal-graphene interfaces is much lower than that of surface-contacted ones, for all devices studied and especially for the single-layer graphene systems. We show that this difference in resistance is not due to differences in the metal-graphene coupling strength, which we quantify using Hamiltonian matrix elements. Instead, the larger contact resistance in surface contacts results from spin filtering at the interface, in contrast to the edge contacted case where both spins are transmitted. Temperature-dependent resistance measurements beyond the Curie temperature T-C show that the spin degree of freedom is indeed important for the experimentally measured contact resistance. These results show that it is possible to induce a large change in contact resistance by changing the temperature in the vicinity of T-C.


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