Single-shot time-resolved measurements of nanosecond-scale spin-transfer induced switching: stochastic versus deterministic aspects

Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Feb 8;100(5):057206. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.100.057206. Epub 2008 Feb 7.


Using high bandwidth resistance measurements, we study the single-shot response of tunnel junctions subjected to spin torque pulses. After the pulse onset, the switching proceeds by a ns-scale incubation delay during which the resistance is quiet, followed by a 400 ps transition terminated by a large ringing that is damped progressively. While the incubation delay fluctuates significantly, the resistance traces are reproducible once this delay is passed. After switching, the time-resolved resistance traces indicate micromagnetic configurations that are rather spatially coherent.