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Title

Revealing the magnetic proximity effect in EuS/Al bilayers through superconducting tunneling spectroscopy

AuthorsStrambini, Elia; Golovach, V. N. CSIC ORCID; Simoni, Giorgio de; Moodera, J. S.; Bergeret, F. S. CSIC ORCID; Giazotto, Francesco
Issue Date2017
PublisherAmerican Physical Society
CitationPhysical Review Materials 1(5): 054402 (2017)
AbstractA ferromagnetic insulator in contact with a superconductor is known to induce an exchange splitting of the singularity in the Bardeen-Cooper-Schrieffer (BCS) density of states (DoS). The magnitude of the splitting is proportional to the exchange field that penetrates into the superconductor to a depth comparable with the superconducting coherence length and which ranges in magnitude from a few to a few tens of tesla. We study this magnetic proximity effect in EuS/Al bilayers and show that the domain structure of the EuS affects the positions and the line shapes of the exchange-split BCS peaks. Remarkably, a clear exchange splitting is observed even in the unmagnetized state of the EuS layer, suggesting that the domain size of the EuS is comparable with the superconducting coherence length. Upon magnetizing the EuS layer, the splitting increases while the peaks change shape. Conductance measurements as a function of bias voltage at the lowest temperatures allowed us to relate the line shape of the split BCS DoS to the characteristic domain structure in the ultrathin EuS layer. These results pave the way to engineering triplet superconducting correlations at domain walls in EuS/Al bilayers. Furthermore, the hard gap and large splitting observed in our tunneling spectroscopy measurements make EuS/Al an excellent candidate for substituting strong magnetic fields in experiments studying Majorana bound states.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevMaterials.1.054402
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/177092
DOI10.1103/PhysRevMaterials.1.054402
Identifiersdoi: 10.1103/PhysRevMaterials.1.054402
e-issn: 2475-9953
arXiv:1705.04795v2
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