The effects on tribological performance of air bearing surface overcoats on magnetic recording sliders are presented. Both component level and disk drive level testing indicate that significant performance enhancements are afforded by the overcoat, and that both stiction/friction and wear of the head/disk interface are reduced, thus increasing interface durability. The degradation in electrical performance of the heads due to the presence of the overcoat is shown to be consistent with that predicted by the Wallace equation. In addition, it is shown that the performance enhancements of the overcoat are achieved only in the presence of lubricant on the disk surface, suggesting that the overcoat lubricant interaction may be more benign than the interaction of the lubricant with the slider material.

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