Tribology on Magnetic Media Heads

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The performance of recording heads on magnetic tape for mass data storage is impacted by the transfer of wear products from the magnetic tape onto the head. Shown below are secondary electron (Fig. 1) and Auger compositional images (Fig. 2) of the active region of a used recording head. The Auger images show the presence of cobalt, from the tape, trailing from the grounded nickel pole. In data not shown here iron from the tape was also observed in these regions.

Sample courtesy of Fred Spada, University of California at San Diego