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Spin Electronics

Module PH2034

This module handbook serves to describe contents, learning outcome, methods and examination type as well as linking to current dates for courses and module examination in the respective sections.

Module version of SS 2021

There are historic module descriptions of this module. A module description is valid until replaced by a newer one.

Whether the module’s courses are offered during a specific semester is listed in the section Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature below.

available module versions
SS 2022SS 2021SS 2020SS 2019SS 2018SS 2017SS 2016SS 2011

Basic Information

PH2034 is a semester module in English or German language at Master’s level which is offered in summer semester.

This Module is included in the following catalogues within the study programs in physics.

  • Specific catalogue of special courses for condensed matter physics
  • Specific catalogue of special courses for Applied and Engineering Physics
  • Complementary catalogue of special courses for nuclear, particle, and astrophysics
  • Complementary catalogue of special courses for Biophysics

If not stated otherwise for export to a non-physics program the student workload is given in the following table.

Total workloadContact hoursCredits (ECTS)
150 h 45 h 5 CP

Responsible coordinator of the module PH2034 in the version of SS 2021 was Hans-Gregor Hübl.

Content, Learning Outcome and Preconditions


1) Magnetoelectronics - positive magnetoresistance - negative magnetoresistance - anisotropic magnetoresistance - AMR (spin-orbit coupling and magnetic resistance) - Colossal magnetoresistance - CMR (manganates, Goodenough-Kanamori-Anderson rules, super and double exchange) - giant magnetoresistance - GMR (Oscillating exchange coupling, exchange anisotropy, artificial antiferromagnets, Intrinsic and extrinsic GMR) - Spin Valves - tunnel magnetoresistance - TMR (elastic tunneling through 1D barriers, conductor/ insulator /conductor, conductor/ insulator /superconductor contacts, ferromagnet / insulator / superconductor contacts, quasiparticles density of states in superconductors, density and spin polarization in ferromagnet ferromagnet / insulator / ferromagnet contacts and Julliere model, band structure effects, spin-filter) - Unusual magnetoresistance - EMR  2) spintronics - spin injection into semiconductors - spin-LEDs and spin-transistors 3) applications - XMR sensors - magnetoresistive read heads, hard drives - Magnetic Random Access Memory - MRAM 

Learning Outcome

After successful completion of this module, the student is able

  1. to understand explain and compare magneto-Resisitive effects (anistrope magnetoresistance, colossal magnetoresistance, giant magnetoresistance, tunneling magnetoresistance)
  2. to describe the magnetization and magnetoresistance curves of ferromagnetic layers and multilayers as a function of the magnetic field
  3. to name elemental ferromagnets, some technically relevant soft and hard magnetic materials, as well as typical materials in magneto-electronic layer structures with the appropriate material parameters (Curie temperature, remanence, coercive field)
  4. to calculate magnetoresistance effects with Boltzmann transport theory and tunneling theory in the one-dimensional limit
  5. to describe ferromagnet / superconductor and ferromagnet / insulator / superconductor contacts 
  6. to designate and analyze applications for magneto-resistive effects. 


No preconditions in addition to the requirements for the Master’s program in Physics.

Courses, Learning and Teaching Methods and Literature

Courses and Schedule

VU 3 Spin electronics Hübl, H. singular or moved dates
and dates in groups

Learning and Teaching Methods

The module consists of a lecture and an exercise.

In the thematically structured lecture the learning content is presented. With cross references between different topics the universal concepts in spinelectronics are shown. In scientific discussions the students are involved to stimulate their analytic-physics intellectual power.

In the exercise class the learning content is deepened and exercised using problem examples and simulations based on physical models. Thus the students are able to explain and apply the learned physics knowledge independently.


Talks, power point, presentation slides, excercises in groups and as an individual, discussions, online coursematerials, literature (textbooks and online materials)


  • R. Gross & A. Marx, Vorlesungsskript Spinelektronik, Walther-Meissner-Institut, Garching (2005).
  • S. Blundell, Magnetism in Condensed Matter, Oxford University Press, New York (2001).
  • R.C. O'Handley, Modern magnetic materials - principles and applications, Wiley, New York (2000).
  • D.D. Awschalom, D. Loss, N. Samarth (eds.), Semiconductor Spintronics and Quantum Computation, Springer, Berlin (2002).
  • S. Maekawa (ed.), Concepts in Spin Electronics, Oxford University Press, New York (2006).
  • Michael Coey: Magnetism and Magnetic Materials (Cambridge University Press, 2009).
  • Y. Xu, D.D. Awschalom, J. Nitta, Handbook of Spintronics (Springer, 2016).

Module Exam

Description of exams and course work

There will be an oral exam of 30 minutes duration. Therein the achievement of the competencies given in section learning outcome is tested exemplarily at least to the given cognition level using comprehension questions, discussions based on sketches and formulas.

For example an assignment in the exam might be:

  • What are possible exchange coupling mechanisms between two ferromagnetic thin films?
  • Which different scattering mechanisms give rise to the anomalous Hall effect in ferromagnets?
  • What is the microscopic origin of the giant magnetoresistance effect?

In the exam no learning aids are permitted.

Participation in the exercise classes is strongly recommended since the exercises prepare for the problems of the exam and rehearse the specific competencies.

Exam Repetition

The exam may be repeated at the end of the semester. There is a possibility to take the exam in the following semester.

Current exam dates

Currently TUMonline lists the following exam dates. In addition to the general information above please refer to the current information given during the course.

Exam to Spin Electronics
Mon, 2024-02-05 till 23:55 Dummy-Termin. Lehrveranstaltungen zu diesem Modul waren im SS 2023. Wenden Sie sich zur individuellen Terminvereinbarung an die/den Prüfer(in). Anmeldung für Prüfungstermin vor 23.03.2024. // Dummy date. Courses to this module were in SS 2023. Contact examiner for individual appointment. Registration for exam date before 2024-Mar-23. till 2024-01-15 (cancelation of registration till 2024-02-04)
Mon, 2024-03-25 till 23:55 Dummy-Termin. Lehrveranstaltungen zu diesem Modul waren im SS 2023. Wenden Sie sich zur individuellen Terminvereinbarung an die/den Prüfer(in). Anmeldung für Prüfungstermin zwischen 25.03.2024 und 20.04.2024. // Dummy date. Courses to this module were in SS 2023. Contact examiner for individual appointment. Registration for exam date between 2024-Mar-25 and 2024-Apr-20. till 2024-03-24
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