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Perpendicular magnetic tunnel junction performance under mechanical strain

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In this work, we investigate effect of the mechanical stress on the performance of magnetic tunnel junctions with perpendicular magnetic anisotropy. We developed a 4-point bending setup that allows us to apply a constant stress over a large substrate area with access to electrical measurements and an external magnetic field. This setup enables us to measure key device performance parameters, such as tunnel magnetoresistance, switching current (I c 50%), and thermal stability (Δ), as a function of applied stress. We find that variations in these parameters are negligible: less than 2% over the entire measured range between the zero stress condition and the maximum stress at the point of wafer breakage.

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