State-of-the art semiconductor devices work using electron charge, whereas the utilization of another information carrier, spin, is still in the infancy, although the spin degree of freedom offers substantial advantages. The obvious one: the charge is volatile, and this means that if you are reading this text on the computer screen, then in the case of the accident with electricity supply, all stored and non-saved information is lost. Another situation would have occurred in the case of a hypothetical spintronics-based computer. Spin is nonvolatile and will not reverse until intentional switch. In addition, spintronic devices require less power and, theoretically, can work with very high switching speed. Spintronic devices are a reality; most families own a spintronic device: the hard disk read head in their computer made a revolution in the magnetic storage industries. But the semiconductor spintronic devices remain an emerging field with many promises in integration of magnetic, semiconducting and optical properties. There is a serious challenge: semiconductor based spintronics technology is limited by the problems of integrating metals and semiconductors in the same heterostructure.
- Fluorination of graphene induces intrinsic magnetism instead of introducing metals.
- A number of nanoscale spintronic devices built around the phenomenon of spin polarization at zigzag edges of graphene have been proposed
- Upon electrostatic gating an on/off switching between nonmagnetic and magnetic states might be achieved ( Wakabayashi); such functionality is a prerequisite for spintronics applications.