Artificial interface anisotropy is demonstrated in alternating Co/Pt and Co/Pd stripe patterns, providing a means of forming magnetic anisotropy using lithography. In-plane hysteresis loops measured along two principal directions are explained in depth by two competing shape and interface anisotropies, thus confirming the formation of interface anisotropy at the Co/Pt and Co/Pd interfaces of the stripe patterns. The measured interface anisotropy energies, which are in the range of 0.2-0.3 erg/cm2 for both stripes, are smaller than those observed in conventional multilayers, indicating a decrease in smoothness of the interfaces when formed by lithography. The demonstration of interface anisotropy in the Co/Pt and Co/Pd stripe patterns is of significant practical importance, because this setup makes it possible to form anisotropy using lithography and to modulate its strength by controlling the pattern width. Furthermore, this makes it possible to form more complex interface anisotropy by fabricating two-dimensional patterns. These artificial anisotropies are expected to open up new device applications such as multilevel bits using in-plane magnetoresistive thin-film structures.
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