Microelectronic Engineering

Magnetic tunnel junctions fabricated at tenth-micron dimensions by electron beam lithography

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Magnetic tunnel junctions consisting of permalloy and cobalt thin film electrodes, separated by a thin aluminum oxide tunnel barrier, have been fabricated by e-beam lithography at dimensions down to 120 nanometers. The devices are fabricated by sputter deposition and ion milling. They exhibit magnetoresistances of up to 22% at room temperature. Evidence of individual domain switching is observed. The smaller junctions have resistances in the kilohm range, which are easily measured, leading to the possibility of sensing and microelectronic applications.