Solid state communications vol:118 issue:12 pages:639-643
We have studied the room temperature magnetoresistance of Co zigzag wires with micrometer width by arranging the wires according to a Wheatstone bridge configuration. Measurements of the magnetoresistance for different orientations of the applied magnetic field reveal a different behavior. The first orientation, corresponding to a different angle between the magnetic field and the two pairs of wires forming the bridge, drives the bridge out of equilibrium. For this first orientation the measured magnetoresistance can be explained in terms of the classical theory for anisotropic magnetoresistance in ferromagnetic materials. For the second orientation, corresponding to an identical angle between the field and all four branches, the bridge is close to being in equilibrium. This provides an extra sensitivity, enabling to observe mesoscopic magnetic effects related to the motion, creation and annihilation of domain walls. Details about the domain structure have been obtained by magnetic force microscopy in the presence of a magnetic field. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.