An electron possesses both, charge and spin. Conventional semiconductor electronics is based on electron’s charge. Spintronics is an emerging technology, which utilizes both charge and spin. Spintronics promises novel devices such as non-volatile memory, microwave oscillators and detectors, logic circuits which will be faster and more energy efficient. In this talk, I will present some of the recent developments in the field of spintronics. One of the important achievements is the discovery of spin-transfer torque (torque exerted by spin-polarized current on a ferromagnet). This torque can rotate the magnetization of a nano-magnet at potentially useful frequencies and even switch its direction. It can also be used to manipulate magnetic domain walls. I will discuss new ways of generating and detecting spin-polarized current. I will also talk about new kinds of spin-based RF oscillators.
Ashwin Tulapurkar is Professor at the Electrical Engineering Department of IIT Bombay. He obtained his B. Tech. in Engineering Physics from IIT Bombay and Ph.D. in Physics from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR). He started working on spintronic devices at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Tsukuba, Japan. He continued spintronics research at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Centre (SLAC), USA and later at Osaka University, Japan before joining IIT Bombay. His current research interests include spin-based phenomena and magnetic materials.