163. WEAR BETWEEN LIFT TAB AND LOAD/UNLOAD RAMP IN HARD DISK DRIVES

Department: Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering
Research Institute Affiliation: Center for Magnetic Recording Research (CMRR)
Faculty Advisor(s): Frank E. Talke

Primary Student
Name: Youyi Fu
Email: yof001@ucsd.edu
Phone: 858-886-6325
Grad Year: 2016

Abstract
During the load/unload process of hard disk drives, the suspension lift tab slides on the load/unload ramp causing the generation of wear debris at the lift tab/ramp interface. The conventional method of evaluating wear at the lift tab/ramp interface is disassembling the hard disk drive and inspecting the contact surfaces using scanning electron microscopy (SEM). However, this method is time consuming and the hard disk drive is damaged during the disassembling process. In this study, a drive-level load/unload testing was conducted as a function of load/unload cycles and temperature. During load/unload testing, the change of friction force between the lift tab and the ramp was calculated by measuring the change of the voice coil motor (VCM) current. We found that the amount of wear debris at the lift tab/ramp interface decreases with an increase in the temperature. In addition, it was found that the voice coil motor current increases if the amount of wear debris at the lift tab/ramp interface increases. This result indicates that the voice coil motor current of a hard disk drive can be used to characterize the amount of wear debris at the lift tab/ramp interface. This method would significantly reduce the time for evaluating wear at the lift tab /ramp interface and not damage the hard disk drive.

Industry Application Area(s)
Materials | Hard Disk Drive

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