Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg

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B2: Magnetoelectric coupling in multiferroic heterostructures

In this project we investigate electronic properties of metal-oxide and oxide-oxide interfaces, with the focus on the magnetoelectric coupling of a ferroelectric oxide with either an oxide or a metal; the latter may be a ferromagnet or an antiferromagnet. The metallization of the interface is of particular interest for the combination of two oxides. We expect that the metallization can be tuned specifically by varying external parameters, for example the orientation of the ferroelectric polarization or of the magnetization. The theoretical basis of our project are ab initio calculations based on density-functional theory.

In addition, we will study electronic transport through metal-oxide-metal tunnel junctions, calculated from first principles within Landauer theory. For multiferroic tunnel junctions with their four resistance states we analyze especially the effects of interface termination, chemical composition, and magnetic order on strength and sign of the tunnel electroresistance. Besides, we will calculate anisotropic tunnel electroresistances brought about by the spin-orbit interaction.

In any case, the objective of the project is to investigate the response of a system on external electromagnetic fields. Our aim is to prove the existence of and to predict switchable phenomena, for example magnetization and resistance.

Principal Investigators

Prof. Dr. Ingrid Mertig ⇒

phone: +49 (0) 345/55 25430

fax: +49 (0) 345/55 25446

Prof. Dr. Ingrid Mertig (Photo: Uni Halle / Michael Deutsch)

Prof. Dr. Ingrid Mertig (Photo: Uni Halle / Michael Deutsch)

PD Dr. Jürgen Henk ⇒

phone: +49 (0) 345/55 25450

fax: +49 (0) 345/55 25446

PD Dr. Jürgen Henk (Photo: Martin Hölzer)

PD Dr. Jürgen Henk (Photo: Martin Hölzer)