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Phys Rev Lett. 2009 Oct 2;103(14):146801. Epub 2009 Sep 29.

Spin-orbit-mediated spin relaxation in graphene.

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Department of Physics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, NO-7491, Trondheim, Norway.


We investigate how spins relax in intrinsic graphene. The spin-orbit coupling arises from the band structure and is enhanced by ripples. The orbital motion is influenced by scattering centers and ripple-induced gauge fields. Spin relaxation due to Elliot-Yafet and Dyakonov-Perel mechanisms and gauge fields in combination with spin-orbit coupling are discussed. In intrinsic graphene, the Dyakonov-Perel mechanism and spin flip due to gauge fields dominate and the spin-flip relaxation time is inversely proportional to the elastic scattering time. The spin-relaxation anisotropy depends on an intricate competition between these mechanisms. Experimental consequences are discussed.

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