Researchers from the UK and Switzerland have shown that a magnetically polarized current can be manipulated by electric fields. This could pave the way towards combining memory and processing power on the same chip.

The researchers have investigated how layers of Lithium Fluoride (LiF) - a material that has an intrinsic electric field - can modify the spin of electrons transported through these spin valves. This is the first time that it was shown how you can proactively control spin with electric fields.

This discovery has been made with flexible organic semiconductors, and so could offer a step-change in the power efficiency and weight of devices based on such materials, such as OLED displays.