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Nature. 2007 Aug 2;448(7153):571-4. Epub 2007 Jul 15.

Electronic spin transport and spin precession in single graphene layers at room temperature.

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1
Physics of Nanodevices, Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, Nijenborgh 4, 9747 AG Groningen, The Netherlands.

Abstract

Electronic transport in single or a few layers of graphene is the subject of intense interest at present. The specific band structure of graphene, with its unique valley structure and Dirac neutrality point separating hole states from electron states, has led to the observation of new electronic transport phenomena such as anomalously quantized Hall effects, absence of weak localization and the existence of a minimum conductivity. In addition to dissipative transport, supercurrent transport has also been observed. Graphene might also be a promising material for spintronics and related applications, such as the realization of spin qubits, owing to the low intrinsic spin orbit interaction, as well as the low hyperfine interaction of the electron spins with the carbon nuclei. Here we report the observation of spin transport, as well as Larmor spin precession, over micrometre-scale distances in single graphene layers. The 'non-local' spin valve geometry was used in these experiments, employing four-terminal contact geometries with ferromagnetic cobalt electrodes making contact with the graphene sheet through a thin oxide layer. We observe clear bipolar (changing from positive to negative sign) spin signals that reflect the magnetization direction of all four electrodes, indicating that spin coherence extends underneath all of the contacts. No significant changes in the spin signals occur between 4.2 K, 77 K and room temperature. We extract a spin relaxation length between 1.5 and 2 mum at room temperature, only weakly dependent on charge density. The spin polarization of the ferromagnetic contacts is calculated from the measurements to be around ten per cent.

PMID:
17632544
DOI:
10.1038/nature06037
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