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Periodic Report Summary 1 - SPINOGRAPH (Spintronics in Graphene)


The “Spintronics in Graphene” Training project (SPINOGRAPH, has created an European network of experts providing state-of-the-art training for 11 early stage researchers (ESR) and 4 Experienced Researchers (ER) in the blooming field of Spintronics in Graphene. The huge success of spintronics in metals which, starting from the pioneering discovery of Giant Magnetoresistance (GMR), has reshaped the magnetoelectronics industry, and, on the other hand, the more recent revolution leading to the fabrication of graphene devices, have naturally led to the exploration of spintronic devices based on graphene, which is already producing records in the spin diffusion length [INGLA].

The primary objective of this network is to significantly enhance the employment prospects of E(S)Rs by: (a) deeply studying/working on a scientific subject that has both a solid ground and an enormous scientific, societal and industrial potential that can strike huge markets and strongly influences our every-day life, (b) engaging E(S)R in research projects in world-leading laboratories, including those whose seminar discoveries started the research in spintronics (CNRS) and graphene (UNIMAN), and in collaboration with small and medium enterprises in the emerging industry of graphene production (GRA), nanofabrication (AMO) and of their applications (THALES) (c) ensuring that all researchers receive scientific and complementary skills training that is critical both to academia and industry and for early researchers to reach a professional maturity.

SPINOGRAPH is coordinated by the International Iberian Nanotechnology Laboratory (INL), in Braga (Portugal), and has 8 more full beneficiaries including 3 universities (Manchester, Groningen and Aachen), 3 public research laboratories (Nanogune in San Sebastian, CNRS in Paris, and IMDEA Nanoscience in Madrid), and 2 SME (AMO in Aaachen, and GRAPHENEA in San Sebastian). In addition, we have two more private sector associate partners, THALES and ARTESC, and one more academic associate partner, the Universidad de Alicante.

SPINOGRAPH started on September 1st 2013 and will run for 48 months. The kick-off meeting was held at the premises of INL (Braga, Portugal), on March 24 2014.

There are at least three main reasons why graphene is believed to be a good material for possible spintronics applications, each of which is studied in a work-package of SPINOGRAPH:
• WP1. Graphene is expected to be a extremely good material to transport spin-polarized currents. Thereby, it would be a great passive material for spintronics devices, with very long spin relaxation length and a high spin injection efficiency.
• WP2. Functionalized graphene and graphene edges are expected/known to be magnetic, with potential for active elements in spintronic devices
• WP3. The electronic and spin properties of graphene can be engineered by means of nanosructuration (one dimensional ribbons, zero-dimensional quantum dots) and by proximity to a nearby magnetic material.

Main results so far
At the point of writing this report (Octobe 2015), SPINOGRAPH fellows have submitted 15 papers, 10 of which are already published.
The most important results obtained so far are:
• The experimental demonstration of a record spin relaxation length in encapsulated bilayer graphene of up to 24 microns [Ingla2015]. This represents the record spin relaxation legnth, so far, measured using the Hanle technique
• The prediction of Majorana states in graphene, when the magnetically ordered phases observed in the Quantum Hall regime [Lado14] are put in contact a conventional superconductor. This has lead to a joint publication (Physical Review X) by the groups of INL and IMDEA [SanJose2015]
• The first measurement of Negative local resistance due to viscous electron backflow in graphene [Bandurin15], a result that shows the possibility to study electron hydrodynamics using high quality graphene.

Networkwide events

In the first 2 years, SPINOGRAPH has organized three 1-week long events (Braga in March 2014, Aachen in December 2014 and San Sebastian in July 2015) combining schools and workshops, as well as a one week long event with training on communication skills in Groningen 2014. In these events our fellows have attended lectures and talks given by top researchers worldwide, and they have also presented their own research results.

Expected impact
SPINOGRAPH aims to have impact at two different levels. First, the high quality technical training given to our fellows is expected to help them in their professional careers. Second, our research in spintronics in graphene and other two dimensional crystals has the potential turn into a disrupting technology in the field of nanoelectronics.

(Spinograph fellows with underlined name)

[Bandurin15] “Negative local resistance due to viscous electron backflow in graphene”
D. A. Bandurin, I. Torre, R. Krishna Kumar, M. Ben Shalom, A. Tomadin, A. Principi, G. H. Auton, E. Khestanova, K. S. Novoselov, I. V. Grigorieva, L. A. Ponomarenko, A. K. Geim, M. Polini, arXiv:1509.04165

[Ingla15] "24 micro-m length spin relaxation length in boron nitride encapsulated bilayer graphene", J. Ingla-Aynés, Marcos H. D. Guimarães, Rick J. Meijerink, Paul J. Zomer, Bart J. van Wees, accepted for publication in Phys. Rev B, arXiv:1506.00472

[Lado15] "Noncollinear magnetic phases and edge states in graphene quantum Hall bars" J. L. Lado and J. Fernández-Rossier Phys. Rev. B 90, 165429 (2014)

[SanJose15] “Majorana zero modes in graphene”
P. San José, J. L. Lado, R. Aguado, F. Guinea, J. Fernández-Rossier
Accepted for publication in Phys. Rev. X (Oct 27, 2015), arXiv:1506.04961

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