The flexible foil slider bearing is an alternate approach to the design of low clearance slider bearings used in direct access storage devices. The flexible foil, or membrane design will be presented as a slider bearing with high film stiffness that can achieve competitive flying heights. The elastohydrodynamics of the membrane slider design will be examined. A steady-state analysis will examine the effects on membrane shape of various physical parameters such as membrane stiffness, and membrane surface backing pressure. A transient analysis will assess the fluid film stiffness of the membrane slider. The membrane slider design has impressive compatibility between the slider and the disk surface for single impulse disturbances as well as continuous or ripple disturbances.

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