A detailed understanding of the interfacial properties of think films used in magnetic media is critical for the aggressive component scaling required for continued improvement in storage density. In particular, it is important to understand how common etching and milling processes affect the interfacial magnetism. We have used polarized neutron reflectometry and transmission electron microscopy to characterize the structural and magnetic properties of an ion beam etched interface of a CoFeB film. We found that the etching process results in a sharp magnetic interface buried under a nanometer scale layer of non-magnetic, compositionally distinct material.
, Lau, J.
and Kirby, B.
Structural and Magnetic Etch Damage in CoFeB, Journal of Applied Physics, [online], https://tsapps.nist.gov/publication/get_pdf.cfm?pub_id=915872
(Accessed December 10, 2023)