Switching magnetization in a perpendicular magnetic tunnel junction (pMTJ) via voltage controlled magnetic anisotropy (VCMA) has shown the potential to markedly reduce switching energy. However, the requirement of an external magnetic field poses a critical bottleneck for its practical applications. In this work, we propose an elliptical-shaped pMTJ to eliminate the requirement of providing an external field by an additional circuit. We demonstrate that a 10 nm thick in-plane magnetized bias layer (BL) separated by a metallic spacer of 3 nm from the free layer (FL) can be engineered within the MTJ stack to provide the 50 mT bias magnetic field for switching. By conducting macrospin simulation, we find that a fast switching in 0.38 ns with energy consumption as low as 0.3 fJ at a voltage of 1.6 V can be achieved. Furthermore, we study the phase diagram of switching probability, showing that a pulse duration margin of 0.15 ns is obtained and low-voltage operation (~1 V) is favored. Finally, the MTJ scalability is considered, and it is found that scaling down may not be appealing in terms of both the energy consumption and the switching time for precession based VCMA switching.
Scientific Reports – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 29, 2017
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