Liquid-Mediated Adhesion at the Thin Film Magnetic Disk/Slider Interface

[+] Author and Article Information
B. Bhushan

Computer Mechanics Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of California, Berkeley, Calif. 94720

M. T. Dugger

Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill. 60208

J. Tribol 112(2), 217-223 (Apr 01, 1990) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2920244 History: Received April 26, 1989; Online June 05, 2008


The adhesive force between magnetic-recording heads and thin film disks in a direction normal to the interface has been measured for a variety of loads, contact times, separation rates, and relative humidities with and without a layer of perfluoropolyether lubricant at the interface. At low humidities, the adhesive force due to the lubricant film alone is small for the lubricant thickness and disk surface roughness used. We find that the major component of the adhesive force between the slider and the disk in humid environments may be attributed to an adsorbed water film which can displace the lubricant (if the disk is lubricated) at sufficiently high loads, during tangential sliding, or after extended exposure to high concentrations of water vapor and create menisci around individual asperity contacts. The adhesive force was found to increase with contact duration on the unlubricated disk, but was essentially independent of contact duration on the lubricated disk. For both lubricated and unlubricated disks, the adhesive force increased with increasing relative humidity and loading rate, but was independent of applied normal load.

Copyright © 1990 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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