Artificial multiferroic van der Waals heterostructures

Principal investigator

Prof. Dr. Stuart Parkin, Max Planck Institut of Microstructure Physics – Halle, stuart.parkin (at) [webpage]

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Our aim is to fabricate ferromagnetic-ferroelectric van der Waals heterostructures in both lateral and vertical geometries, in order to create artificial 2D multiferroic ensembles. The coupling between ferromagnetic and ferroelectric domains, leading to a very rich physics of lattice, spin and charge order interaction at the interface, will be investigated. Of particular interest is whether the two-dimensional nature of the ferroic materials brings new insights to control and enhance the multiferroic coupling compared to conventional multiferroics.

We will prepare van der Waals heterostructures in-situ via molecular-beam epitaxy (MBE) to guarantee an atomically clean interface and characterize the multiferroic order with our established experimental methodologies including spin-polarized scanning tunneling microscopy (SP-STM), magnetic and piezo force microscopies (MFM/PFM) as well as synchrotron-based x-ray magnetic circular dichroism (XMCD).