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Taking advantage of microelectromechanical system technology, a slider with an integrated microactuator (SLIM) for use in hard disc drives was devised. It allows both a lowering to the operating static flying height and a second-stage actuation for ultraprecision track following. By placing the read/write element on a small chiplet rather than on the trailing edge of a slider, the design promises to be cost competitive. This paper provides an overview over the research results achieved so far. It discusses the fabrication technology applied for fabricating both the micromagnetics and micromechanics and presents experimental dynamic test results on SLIM devices which-although not yet flyable-do have fully functional microactuators.
Date of Publication: March 2010