An analytical model has been used to predict the interface temperature of a typical magnetic head-tape contact and of isolated (exposed) magnetic particles in contact with the head. Average and maximum interface temperatures for the assumed head-tape interface are about 7° and 10° C, respectively. If the exposed magnetic particles contact the head surface, the average and maximum temperture rises could be about 600° and 900° C, respectively. The duration of an asperity contact is about 2 to 4 μs and the thermal gradients perpendicular to the sliding surface are very large (a temperature drop of 90 percent in a depth of less than the radius of an asperity contact or a few micrometers). The predicted temperatures are compared with the temperatures previously measured using an infrared radiometric technique.

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