As the head-disk spacing reduces in order to achieve the areal density goal of 1 Tb/in.2, dynamic stability of the slider is compromised due to a variety of proximity interactions. Lubricant pickup by the slider from the disk is one of the major reasons for decrease in the stability as it contributes to meniscus forces and contamination. Disk-to-head lubricant transfer leads to lubricant pickup on the slider and also causes depletion of lubricant on the disk. In this paper we experimentally and numerically investigate the process of disk-to-head lubricant transfer using a half-delubed disk, and we propose a parametric model based on the experimental results. We also investigate the dependence of disk-to-head lubricant transfer on the disk lubricant thickness, lubricant type and the slider ABS design. It is concluded that disk-to-head lubricant transfer occurs without slider-disk contact and there can be more than one timescale associated with the transfer. Further, the transfer increases non-linearly with increasing disk lubricant thickness. Also, it is seen that the transfer depends on the type of lubricant used, and is less for Ztetraol than for Zdol. The slider ABS design also plays an important role, and a few suggestions are made to improve the ABS design for better lubricant performance.

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