Current-induced switching of proximity-induced ferromagnetic surface states in a topological insulator


Masataka Mogi, Kenji Yasuda, Reika Fujimura, Ryutaro Yoshimi, Naoki Ogawa, Atsushi Tsukazaki, Minoru Kawamura, Kei S. Takahashi, Masashi Kawasaki, Yoshinori Tokura

Electrical manipulation of magnetization could be an essential function for energy-efficient spintronics technology. A magnetic topological insulator, possessing a magnetically gapped surface state with spin-polarized electrons, not only exhibits exotic topological phases relevant to the quantum anomalous Hall state but also enables the electrical control of its magnetic state at the surface. Here, we demonstrate efficient current-induced switching of the surface ferromagnetism in hetero-bilayers consisting of the topological insulator (Bi1-xSbx)2Te3 and the ferromagnetic insulator Cr2Ge2Te6, where the proximity-induced ferromagnetic surface states play two roles: efficient charge-to-spin current conversion and emergence of large anomalous Hall effect. The sign reversal of the surface ferromagnetic states with current injection is clearly observed, accompanying the nearly full magnetization reversal in the adjacent insulating Cr2Ge2Te6 layer of an optimal thickness range. The present results may facilitate an electrical control of dissipationless topological-current circuits.

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