Open Access Nano Review

Electronic and magnetic properties of SnO2/CrO2 thin superlattices

Pablo D Borges1*, Luísa MR Scolfaro2, Horácio W Leite Alves3, Eronides F da Silva4 and Lucy VC Assali1

Author Affiliations

1 Instituto de Física, Universidade de São Paulo, CP 66318, São Paulo, SP, 05315-970, Brazil

2 Department of Physics, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX, 78666, USA

3 Universidade Federal de São João Del Rei, CP 110, São Joao Del Rei, MG, 36301-160, Brazil

4 Departamento de Fisica, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Recife, PE, 50670-901, Brazil

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Nanoscale Research Letters 2011, 6:146  doi:10.1186/1556-276X-6-146

Published: 15 February 2011


In this article, using first-principles electronic structure calculations within the spin density functional theory, alternated magnetic and non-magnetic layers of rutile-CrO2 and rutile-SnO2 respectively, in a (CrO2)n(SnO2)n superlattice (SL) configuration, with n being the number of monolayers which are considered equal to 1, 2, ..., 10 are studied. A half-metallic behavior is observed for the (CrO2)n(SnO2)n SLs for all values of n. The ground state is found to be FM with a magnetic moment of 2 μB per chromium atom, and this result does not depend on the number of monolayers n. As the FM rutile-CrO2 is unstable at ambient temperature, and known to be stabilized when on top of SnO2, the authors suggest that (CrO2)n(SnO2)n SLs may be applied to spintronic technologies since they provide efficient spin-polarized carriers.