The performance and reliability of the GMR heads are adversely affected by self-heating due to the aggressive scaling of its dimensions to increase areal density. In this manuscript, the self-heating of the GMR head during the normal operation is investigated. An analytical model is developed to estimate the temperature rise in the GMR sensor due to self-heating for magnetic recording areal densities from 2.8 to 80 Gbits/in2, which agrees well with the FEM simulations. This model is subsequently used to investigate the influence of the GMR head constituent materials’ thermal properties on the device temperature rise. A 3-D finite element analysis was also performed to predict the level of self-heating in lead-overlaid (LOL) design, which agrees well with the experimental data obtained using steady-state and transient measurements.   This paper was also originally published as part of the Proceedings of the ASME 2005 Pacific Rim Technical Conference and Exhibition on Integration and Packaging of MEMS, NEMS, and Electronic Systems.

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