Electrical control of memristance and magnetoresistance in oxide magnetic tunnel junctions
Electric-field control of magnetic and transport properties of magnetic tunnel junctions has promising applications in spintronics. Here, we experimentally demonstrate a reversible electrical manipulation of memristance, magnetoresistance, and exchange bias in Co/CoO–ZnO/Co magnetic tunnel junctions, which enables the realization of four nonvolatile resistance states. Moreover, greatly enhanced tunneling magnetoresistance of 68% was observed due to the enhanced spin polarization of the bottom Co/CoO interface. The ab initio calculations further indicate that the spin polarization of the Co/CoO interface is as high as 73% near the Fermi level and plenty of oxygen vacancies can induce metal–insulator transition of the CoO1−v layer. Thus, the electrical manipulation mechanism on the memristance, magnetoresistance and exchange bias can be attributed to the electric-field-driven migration of oxygen ions/vacancies between very thin CoO and ZnO layers.