The structural, electronic, and magnetic properties of CoFeCrX (X = Si, Ge) Heusler alloys have been investigated. Experimentally, the alloys were synthesized in the cubic L21 structure with small disorder. The cubic phase of CoFeCrSi was found to be highly stable against heat treatment, but CoFeCrGe disintegrated into other new compounds when the temperature reached 402 °C (675 K). Although the first-principle calculation predicted the possibility of tetragonal phase in CoFeCrGe, the tetragonal phase could not be stabilized experimentally. Both CoFeCrSi and CoFeCrGe compounds showed ferrimagnetic spin order at room temperature and have Curie temperatures (TC) significantly above room temperature. The measured TC for CoFeCrSi is 790 K but that of CoFeCrGe could not be measured due to its dissociation into new compounds at 675 K. The saturation magnetizations of CoFeCrSi and CoFeCrGe are 2.82 μB/f.u. and 2.78 μB/f.u., respectively, which are close to the theoretically predicted value of 3 μB/f.u. for their half-metallic phases. The calculated band gaps for CoFeCrSi and CoFeCrGe are, respectively, 1 eV and 0.5 eV. These materials have potential for spintronic device applications, as they exhibit half-metallic electronic structures with large band gaps, and Curie temperatures significantly above room temperature.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)