The longitudinal spin Seebeck effect is used as a detector for the magnetic properties and switching characteristics of magnetic thin insulating films. We use a 300 nm and a 20 nm thick Yttrium Iron Garnet (YIG, Y3Fe5O12) film prepared by pulsed laser deposition and afterwards coated by platinum for the detection of the thermally excited magnons by the inverse spin Hall effect. The inverse spin Hall signals reveal a magnetic uniaxial anisotropy along the direction of the platinum stripe in the thicker film. For the thin film we find a more isotropic behavior, which is complementarily observed using the magnetoresistance occurring at the platinum/YIG interface. We explain our results on the basis of x-ray diffraction data, which reveal a miscut of the substrate and film surface and an expansion of the YIG lattice. Both findings favor a growth-induced magnetic anisotropy that we observe.

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