Two experimental programs are discussed which exploit the use of polarised electrons for studies of fundamental processes and physical properties. In one program, collisions between spin-polarised electrons and optically pubped sodium atoms provide a very detailed characterisation of the spin-dependent interactions important in low-energy electon-atom collisions. The results of these measurement provide a critical test for the reliability of state-of-the-art electron scattering calculations. In the second program, the spin polarisation of secondary electrons ejected by high-energy electron impact is used to determine the magnetic structure of ferromagnetic materials with very high spatial resolution (~60 nm). This ability to perform such studies with high resolution has been exploited both in studies of teh basic magnetic properties of ferromagnetic materials and in studies of how thses basic properties affect the magnetic structure and performance of devices used for magnetic information storage.
Citation: Australian Journal of Physics
Pub Type: Journals