The ferromagnetic/nonmagnetic (FM/NM) interfacial effects on the spin accumulation in the free layer were studied in a pseudo-spin-valve structure (PSVs) consisting of two FM layers separated by a NM spacer layer. We developed a spin current model for the current-induced magnetic switching (CIMS) effect based on the spin diffusion equations and appropriate boundary conditions, and derived a new formula for the spin-dependent electrochemical potentials that are related to the spin-dependent density of states. The results indicate that the spin accumulation in the free layer mainly depends on the interfacial spin asymmetry coefficient Ξ?which originates from the spin-dependent interfacial conductance. In the parallel (anti-parallel) configuration of the magnetization direction for the free and fixed layer, the positive (negative) electron current (electrons from the free layer to the fixed layer and vice versa) drives the spin current polarization factor at the interface between the top electrode and the free layer to vary from Ξ? (-Ξ?) to 0, while at the interface between the free layer and the spacer layer the spin current polarization factor vary from Ξ? (0) to Ξ?/2, which means the total spin current polarization factor in the free layer varies from 0 (Ξ?) to Ξ?/2. These results show that the anti-parallel configuration has a less critical switching current than that of the parallel configuration. Thus, we can design PSVs with symmetrical critical current based on the model.
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