Metastable face-centered cubic (fcc) Fe/Cu(100) thin films are good candidates for ion-beam magnetic patterning due to their magnetic transformation upon ion-beam irradiation. However, pure fcc Fe films undergo spontaneous transformation when their thickness exceeds 10 ML. This limit can be extended to approximately 22 ML by deposition of Fe at increased CO background pressures. We show that much thicker films can be grown by alloying with Ni for stabilizing the fcc gamma phase. The amount of Ni necessary to stabilize nonmagnetic, transformable fcc Fe films in dependence on the residual background pressure during the deposition is determined and a phase diagram revealing the transformable region is presented.
Corresponding author: Michal Urbánek. Reprints also available from M. Schmid (schmid).
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