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Following on the heels of our earlier story about multiferroic superconductor work at Berkeley Lab, we also received word about work there regarding spontaneous magnetization in bismuth ferrite (BFO), another multiferroic material.

What seems to have researchers really excited is that they can turn this magnetization on and off via an external electric field at room temperature, making the BFO a possible material for spintronic applications.

In a news release from the lab, Ramamoorthy Ramesh, the materials scientist with lab’s Materials Sciences Division who led this research, explains the novel approach taken:

“[W]e’ve created a new magnetic state in bismuth ferrite along with the ability to electrically control this magnetism at room temperature. An enhanced magnetization arises in the rhombohedral phases of our bismuth ferrite self-assembled nanostructures. This magnetization is strain-confined between the tetragonal phases of the material and can be erased by the application of an electric field. The magnetization is restored when the polarity of the electric field is reversed.”

To read the rest of the article, click here.
Category: Science