Depth-dependent fct to fcc strain relaxation in CoxNi1-x/Cu3Au(1 0 0) alloy films

Bo Yao Wang, Wen Chin Lin, Yu Wen Liao, Ker Jar Song, Minn Tsong Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


CoxNi1-x/Cu3Au(1 0 0) with x ≤ 11% was prepared at room temperature to study the strain relaxation and their correlation with the spin-reorientation transition. The vertical interlayer distance relaxed from 1.66 Å (fct) to 1.76 Å (fcc) while the thickness increased from 8 ML to 18 ML. Such rapid strain relaxation with thickness was attributed to the larger lattice mismatch between CoxNi1-x and Cu3Au(1 0 0) (η ∼ -6.5%). The smooth change for crystalline structure was observed during strain relaxation process in which the crystalline structure seems irrespective of the alloy composition. To explain the strain relaxation, a phenomenological model was proposed. We provide a physical picture that the deeper layers may not relax while the surface layer start to relax. This assumption is based on the several experimental studies. Using the strain averaged from all layers of thin film as the volume strain of magneto-elastic anisotropy energy, the interrelation between strain relaxation and spin reorientation transition can be well described in a Néel type magneto-elastic model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4517-4526
Number of pages10
JournalSurface Science
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Oct 1
Externally publishedYes


  • Alloy
  • Co
  • Magnetic ultrathin film
  • Ni
  • Spin-reorientation transition
  • Strain relaxation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Materials Chemistry


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