To investigate the structural and magnetic properties of thin films of FeN we have performed ab initio molecular dynamics simulations of their formation on Cu(100) substrates. The iron nitride layers exhibit a p4gm(2 × 2) reconstruction and order ferromagnetically in agreement with experiment. We establish the dynamics and time scale of the film formation as a function of the film thickness. The process is split in two phases: formation of almost flat FeN layers and optimization of the distance to the substrate. Our calculated magnetic moments are 1.67 μ B, 2.14 μ B, and 2.21 μ B for one, two, and three monolayers of iron nitride. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physics and Astronomy(all)
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry