When German mineralogist Gustav Rose stood on the slopes of Russia's Ural Mountains in 1839 and picked up a piece of a previously undiscovered mineral, he had never heard of transistors or diodes or had any concept of how conventional electronics would become an integral part of our daily lives.
In 2017, University of Utah physicist Valy Vardeny called perovskite a "miracle material" for an emerging field of next-generation electronics, called spintronics, and he's standing by that assertion.
In a paper published today in Nature Communications, Vardeny, along with Jingying Wang, Dali Sun (now at North Carolina State University) and colleagues present two devices built using perovskite to demonstrate the material's potential in spintronic systems.
Its properties, Vardeny says, bring the dream of a spintronic transistor one step closer to reality.
A conventional digital electronic system conveys a binary signal (think 1s and 0s) through pulses of electrons carried through a conductive wire.
Such a device requires a semiconductor material in which a magnetic field can easily manipulate the direction of electrons' spin--a property called spin-orbit coupling.