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Current-in-Plane GMR Trilayer Head Design for Hard-Disk Drives: Characterization and Extendibility

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13 Author(s)
Robert Lamberton ; Seagate Technol. Recording Head Oper., Springtown ; Michael Seigler ; Kalman Pelhos ; Hua Zhou
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The current-in-plane giant magnetoresistive (GMR) trilayer readback sensor (CIP-3L), where only one permanent magnet at the back edge of the GMR stack is used to stabilize and bias a dual free layer system, is reviewed. Micromagnetic modeling is employed to show that the design has improved efficiency over abutted junction (ABJ) tunneling magnetoresistive (TMR) head designs. An experimental evaluation of how permanent magnet thickness (PM Th), interlayer exchange coupling (J), and stripe height impact the signal-to-noise ratio, symmetry, and stability of prototype CIP-3L heads is conducted. The study indicates that PM Th >400 nm, J<-0.8 erg/cm2, and a read width to SH aspect ratio of 1:1 to 0.75:1, gives optimal transfer curve performance. A head gimbal assembly spinstand comparison on perpendicular recording media with best-in-class TMR readers shows that although the amplitude of the CIP-3L heads is lower (believed to be process related), the symmetry, stability, and most important, bit-error rate normalized to electrical write width and read width, are comparable. In addition, the CIP-3L design shows better linearity and low-frequency noise performance than TMR heads. The areal density performance of the best CIP-3L heads shows 195 Gb/in2 recording capability and linear densities of 1100 kbpi

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Magnetics  (Volume:43 ,  Issue: 2 )