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Capacitance methods in head-disk interface studies

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1 Author(s)
Sonnenfeld, Richard ; IBM Almaden Res. Center, San Jose, CA, USA

Three new applications for precise capacitance measurements between sliders and disks are discussed. The slider-disk capacitance is shown to be a nondestructive measurement of stiction forces. The capacitance-stripe technique is discussed as a way to measure fly-height, pitch, and crown of sliders. A new implementation of the capacitance microscope is introduced which uses a special slider to profile a hard disk spinning at up to 20 m/s with 20-μm lateral resolution and 1-nm vertical resolution. Emphasis is placed on the capacitance microscope, whose chief advantage over conventional profilometry is that it allows continuous observation of a disk under a flying interface in situ. Results from a reliability test are presented to illustrate application of the capacitance microscope. Correlation between magnetic signal loss and physical damage that occurs during this reliability test provides further insight into disk failure

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Magnetics, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:29 ,  Issue: 1 )