Invited Paper MI-WeA1
Spin Tunneling and Transport through Organic Semiconductors - Towards Large Spin Relaxation Length
Wednesday, October 22, 2008, 1:40 pm, Room 206
The emerging field of organic spintronics is merging the two hot fields - organic electronics and spintronics. Chemical tunability of electrical properties in organic semiconductors (OS) with a bottom-up approach, along with the mechanical flexibility and low-cost fabrication processes has given rise to organic-electronic devices, such as light-emitting diodes (OLED) and field effect transistors (OFET). From the spintronics viewpoint, of growing interest is the potential to transport and manipulate spin information in OSs. Spin-orbit and hyperfine interactions, the main cause of spin-decoherence, being weak in OSs, suggest a large λs in these materials. Electron spin polarized tunneling is explored with ultrathin layers of the molecular organic semiconductor tris(8-hydroxyquinolinato)aluminum (Alq3) and Rubrene (C42H28). Significant tunnel magnetoresistance (TMR) was measured in magnetic tunnel junctions at room temperature, which increased when cooled to low temperatures. Spin polarization of the tunnel current through these OS layers directly measured using superconducting Al as the spin detector, shows that minimizing formation of an interfacial dipole layer between the metal electrode and organic barrier significantly enhanced elastic tunneling characteristics and greatly improves the spin transport. For example, directly measured spin diffusion length (λs) in amorphous rubrene by spin polarized tunneling is large in comparison to amorphous Si or Ge, where no spin-conserved transport has been reported. These results will be discussed. Based on our findings, λs in single crystalline OS can be expected to reach even millimeters, showing the potential for organic spintronics development. Work done in collaboration with Tiffany Santos, Jenny Shim, Karthik V. Raman and supported by KIST-MIT project fund and ONR grant.