The touchdown-takeoff velocity hysteresis observed in hard disk drives during CSS or L/UL tests is analyzed using an experimental approach. Tests similar to L/UL were conducted for different slider-disk combinations at different humidities. Factors affecting the touchdown and takeoff velocity were identified on the basis of their domain of operation. It is concluded that the intermolecular forces and meniscus forces are contributing factors to hysteresis, which is also influenced by disk topography and slider dynamics.

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