We use a matrix Boltzmann equation formalism to test the accuracy of Slonczewskis theory of spin-transfer torque in thin-film heterostructures where a non-magnetic spacer layer separates two non-collinear ferromagnetic layers connected to non-magnetic leads. When applicable, the model predictions for the torque as a function of the angle between the two ferromagnets agree extremely well with the torques computed from a Boltzmann equation calculation. We focus on asymmetric structures (where the two ferromagnets and two leads are not identical) where the agreement pertains to a new analytic formula for the torque derived by us using Slonczewskis theory. In almost all cases, we can predict the correct value of the model parameters directly from the geometric and transport properties of the multilayer. For some asymmetric geometries, we predict a new mode of stable precession that does not occur for the symmetric case studied by Slonczewski.
Citation: Physical Review B (Condensed Matter and Materials Physics)
Pub Type: Journals