Effect of Excitation Fatigue on the Synchronization of Multiple Nanocontact Spin-Torque Oscillators
Journal article, 2014
Nanocontact spin-torque oscillators (NC-STOs) act as intrinsically nanoscale and highly current and magnetic field tunable, ultrawide band microwave signal generators. However, their low output power and high phase noise remain critical obstacles toward actual applications. Mutual synchronization of multiple NCs is one possibility to overcome these shortcomings. This letter presents a detailed study of the mutual synchronization in a NC-STO with two NCs. In particular, the effect of repeated measurements on the synchronization behavior is explored. Repeated measurements at high drive currents are shown to significantly degrade the performance of the devices with the most striking consequence being that the devices can no longer be synchronized. Ferromagnetic resonance measurements reveal a decrease in the saturation magnetization and an increase in the damping coefficient in annealed NiFe films, consistent with Cu diffusion into the NiFe from the adjacent Cu layers. This increase in damping will act to sever the spin wave-mediated communication channel between the NCs necessary for synchronization. These results highlight an important consideration when studying the synchronization behavior of multi-NC devices where Joule heating is expected to scale unfavorably with the number of NCs.
spin torque oscillators