Digital filtering methodology used to reduce scale of measurement effects in roughness parameters for magnetic storage supersmooth hard disks Academic Article uri icon


  • Roughness of disk media influences the tribological interaction of head-disk interfaces, especially when the intended flying-height is below 5 nm that is required to achieve extremely high-density recording (EHDR). Roughness parameters such as the root-mean-square (RMS) amplitude, however, are influenced by the scale of measurement, such as the scan size. Effects related to scale of measurement such as varying the scan size were investigated and means to reduce such effects were proposed by establishing an "ad hoc" digital filtering procedure. Two types of magnetic disks intended for EHDR were measured by an atomic force microscope (AFM) at various scan dimensions ranging from 0.5 μm × 0.5 μm to 112 μm × 112 μm. The proposed filtering method used the RMS values as a filter design parameter for choosing the appropriate high-pass cutoff wavelength for each scan size. The study revealed the existence of a unique cutoff wavelength that would identify different wavelength regimes and the associated critical scan size in each disk. To substantiate the effectiveness of the proposed filtering method in reducing the scale of measurement effects related to the scan size, other roughness parameters were also calculated subsequent to the filtering procedure. It was found that the proposed filtering scheme effectively reduced the scale of measurement effects in the amplitude parameters (e.g., RMS and the ten-point height variation) and the functional parameters (e.g., material and core void volumes). These parameters exhibited steady-state trends with respect to increasing scan size, indicating reduced scale of measurement effects. © 2005 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

author list (cited authors)

  • Suh, A. Y., & Polycarpou, A. A.

citation count

  • 13

publication date

  • February 2006

published in