Magneto-optic Kerr effect (MOKE) and magnetoresistance (MR) measurements were used to measure the switching characteristics of spin-valve (SV) arrays currently being developed to trap and release superparamagnetic beads within a fluid medium. The effect of SV size on switching observed by MOKE showed that a 1 υm x 8 υm SV element was found to have optimal switching characteristics. MR measurements on a single 1 υm x 8 υm SV switched with either an external applied magnetic field or a local magnetic field generated by an integrated write wire (current density ranging from 106 to 107 A/cm2) confirmed the MOKE findings. The 1 υm x 8 υm SV low field switching was observed to be +8 and -2 mT with two stable states at zero field; the high field switching was observed to be -18 mT. The low switching fields and the large magnetic moment of the SV trap along with our observation of minimal magnetostatic effect for dense arrays are necessary design characteristics for high-force, "switchable-magnet," microfluidic bead trap applications.
Citation: Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials
Pub Type: Journals
spin-valve, magnetic beads, microfluidic, magnetic manipulation, switchable magnetic trap