Magnetic nanostructures have widespread applications in many areas of physics and engineering, and nanosphere lithography has recently emerged as promising tool for the fabrication of such nanostructures. The goal of this research is to explore the magnetic properties of a thin film of ferromagnetic material deposited onto a hexagonally close-packed monolayer array of polystyrene nanospheres, and how they differ from the magnetic properties of a typical flat thin film. The first portion of this research focuses on determining the optimum conditions for depositing a monolayer of nanospheres onto chemically pretreated silicon substrates (via drop-coating) and the subsequent characterization of the deposited nanosphere layer with scanning electron microscopy. Single layers of permalloy (Ni80Fe20) are then deposited on top of the nanosphere array via DC magnetron sputtering, resulting in a thin film array of magnetic nanocaps. The coercivities of the thin films are measured using a home-built magneto-optical Kerr effect (MOKE) system in longitudinal arrangement. MOKE measurements show that for a single layer of permalloy (Py), the coercivity of a thin film deposited onto an array of nanospheres increases compared to that of a flat thin film. In addition, the coercivity increases as the nanosphere size decreases for the same deposited layer. It is postulated that magnetic exchange decoupling between neighboring nanocaps suppresses the propagation of magnetic domain walls, and this pinning of the domain walls is thought to be the primary source of the increase in coercivity.
|Commitee:||Bill, Andreas, Kwon, Chuhee|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 52/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Nanosphere lithography, Thin films|
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