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VOLUME 91 | ISSUE 6 | PAGE 329
Superconducting triplet spin valve
We study the critical temperature Tc of SFF trilayers (S is a singlet superconductor, F is a ferromagnetic metal), where the long-range triplet superconducting component is generated at noncollinear magnetizations of the F layers. We demonstrate that Tc can be a nonmonotonic function of the angle α between the magnetizations of the two F layers. The minimum is achieved at an intermediate α, lying between the parallel (P, α=0) and antiparallel (AP, α=π) cases. This implies a possibility of a «triplet» spin-valve effect: at temperatures above the minimum T_c^\mathrm{Tr} but below T_c^\mathrm{P} and T_c^\mathrm{AP}, the system is superconducting only in the vicinity of the collinear orientations. At certain parameters, we predict a reentrant Tc(α) behavior. At the same time, considering only the P and AP orientations, we find that both the «standard» (T_c^\mathrm{P} <T_c^\mathrm{AP}) and «inverse» (T_c^\mathrm{P} >T_c^\mathrm{AP}) switching effects are possible depending on parameters of the system.