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Phys Rev Lett. 2005 Jan 28;94(3):037006. Epub 2005 Jan 26.

Coexistence of ferromagnetism and superconductivity in Ni/Bi bilayers.

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Francis Bitter Magnet Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139, USA.


In spite of a lack of superconductivity in bulk crystalline Bi, thin film Bi deposited on thin Ni underlayers are strong-coupled superconductors below approximately 4 K. We unambiguously demonstrate that by tuning the Ni thickness the competition between ferromagnetism and superconductivity in the Ni/Bi can be tailored. For a narrow range of Ni thicknesses, the coexistence of both a superconducting energy gap and conduction electron spin polarization are visible within the Ni side of the Ni/Bi bilayers, independent of any particular theoretical model. We believe that this represents one of the clearest observations of superconductivity and ferromagnetism coexisting.

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