Graphene Flagship scientists based at the University of Groningen, The Netherlands, have created a device based on a blilayer of graphene and boron nitride which shows unprecedented spin transport efficiency at room temperature. Highlighting the potential of creating devices containing graphene and related materials, the spin signal measured here is so large that it can be used in real-life applications such as spin based logic and transistors.
Published in Nature Communications, this research, led by Professor Bart van Wees, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, reports a graphene-based device in which electron spins can be injected and detected at room temperature with high efficiency. The key is the interplay between the graphene and the boron nitride in the way that they conduct electron spins.
Spin can be thought of as the rotation of an electron around its own axis. It is a form of intrinsic angular momentum and can be detected as a magnetic field with one of two orientations: up and down. Electron spin is difficult to handle and often loses direction over time. To use electron spin in a device, spin polarisation is important—this is the ability to control the fraction of electrons with a spin up or down. “Spin polarization can be achieved by sending the electrons through a ferromagnetic material,” van Wees explains.
The full story is available below.