University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy
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Oriol T. Valls

Zero-Energy peak and triplet correlations in nanoscale superconductor/ferromagnet spin valves
M. Alidoust, K. Halterman and O.T. Valls, Phys. Rev. B 92, 014508 (2015)

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Using a self-consistent Bogoliubov-de Gennes approach, we theoretically study the proximity-induced density of states (DOS) in clean \sff spin-valves with noncollinear exchange fields. Our results clearly demonstrate a direct correlation between the presence of a zero energy peak (ZEP) in the DOS spectrum and the persistencewhich we also evaluate. By systematically varying the geometrical and material parameters governing the spin-valve, we point out to experimentally optimal system configurations where the ZEPs are most pronounced, and which can be effectively probed via scanning tunneling microscopy. We complement these findings in the ballistic regime by employing the Usadel formalism in the full proximity limit to investigate their diffusive \sff counterparts. We determine the optimal normalized ferromagnetic layer thicknesses which result in the largest ZEPs. Our results can serve as guidelines in designing samples for future experiments.