Spin manipulation with magnetic semiconductor barriers
Magnetic semiconductors are a class of materials with special spin-filtering capabilities with magnetically tunable energy gaps. Many of these materials also possess another intrinsic property: indirect exchange interaction between the localized magnetic moments and the adjacent free electrons, which manifests as an extremely large effective magnetic field applying only on the spin degrees of freedom of the free electrons. Novel device concepts can be created by taking advantage of these properties. We discuss in the article the basic principles of these phenomena, and potential ways of applying them in constructing spintronic devices.