Magnetic properties and magnetization reversal of CoSm ∥ Cr thin films

Z. S. Shan, S. S. Malhotra, S. H. Liou, Yi Liu, M. Yu, D. J. Sellmyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


In this paper the magnetic and structural properties of CoSm thin films with a Cr underlayer (CoSm ∥ Cr) are presented, with emphasis on the measurements of anisotropy at room and low temperature and magnetization reversal. The grain size of the Cr underlayer is about 250 Å and the thin CoSm layer (e.g., 240 Å) inherits this grain size. The CoSm layer consists of nanocrystallites, about 50 Å in diameter, embedded in an amorphous matrix. The Ar pressure, CoSm layer-thickness, and temperature dependencies of magnetic properties including magnetization, coercivity and especially the anisotropy were investigated systematically. CoSm ∥ Cr with coercivity up to 4.2 kOe at room temperature has been prepared. The intrinsic anisotropy is 4 × 106 and 1.4 × 107 erg/cm3 at room temperature for CoSm(240 Å) ∥ Cr and CoSm(960 Å) ∥ Cr, respectively, and both increase to 3.9 × 107 erg/cm3 at 10 K. Magnetization reversal studies indicate that the coercivity mechanism changes from wall pinning for samples prepared at lower Ar pressure (5-12 mT) to single-particle coherent rotation for samples prepared at higher pressure (30 mT). The correlations between the microstructure and magnetic properties are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-336
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials
StatePublished - Aug 1996


  • CoSm film
  • Coercivity mechanism
  • Magnetic anisotropy
  • Magnetic switching volume
  • Magnetization reversal
  • Microstructure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics


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