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Applications - Electrical & Electronics

Park Systems, the Nanotechnology Solutions Partner for HDD Industry

Park Systems serves the hard disk drive (HDD) industry with automated nanotechnology measurement solutions including atomic force microscopes, software, and global service and support. Partnering with world leaders in HDD industry, Park Systems has been successfully delivering optimized solutions for the most challenging imaging and measurement needs in the industry. 

The company’s HDD-Optimize program is a state-of the-art nanotechnology solutions service for the hard disk drive industry. Under the systematic approach of the program, Park Systems ensures rapid alignment and performance of the Park AFM nanotechnology measurement platform with the specific requirement of its customers.


Limitations in Current Method of Slider Metrology


Need to take a separate image to
compensate for background curvature
Tact time: ~5min

Not enough pixel resolutions for small
region of interest, i.e. writer pole
Tact time: ~5min

Manual search and find of small region of interest for high resolution imaging
Tact time: ~30min

Low Measurement Throughput : One Writer Pole Image takes ~40 minutes
- Labor intensive manual process
- High labor cost



Going Beyond Conventional PTR Measurements

The overall mechanical characterization of sliders now involves
- A variety of metrology systems and 
- A variety of resolution requirements

In order to improve yield and reliability of slider manufacturing, one has to go beyond conventional PTR measurements
Answer: Programmable Data Density


XE-PTR: For In-line Pole Tip Recession Metrology of Hard Disk Sliders

Continuing the company’s impressive track record of developing optimized solutions, Park Systems introduces XE-PTR, an automatic AFM which revolutionizes the way sliders in HDD are imaged and analyzed. The new XE-PTR significantly increases accuracy and throughput for the slider’s pole tip recession imaging process with the innovative Programmable Data Density (PDD) capability.


Inline Automation

sub s Automatic Data Acquisition and Analysis of Sliders
sub s Allowable Sample Types: Rowbars, Sliders
sub s Artifact Free Metrology by Crosstalk Elimination
sub s Longer Tip Life by True Non-Contact Mode
sub s High Throughput Feature Measurement by PDD
sub s Automatic Tip Exchange (Optional)
sub s HGA Sample Fixture (Optional)


Current Limitations of Conventional AFM


 Piezo tube is not an orthogonal 3-D actuator (scanner bowing)
 Non-Contact Mode not possible due to slow z-servo response
 Measurement throughput is prohibitively limiting

What should we do?

 New AFM platform to eliminate intrinsic hysteresis and non-linearity of piezotube
 New AFM platform to improve Z-servo bandwidth to enable non-contact mode
 New AFM platform to enable smart algorithm to scan sample features of interest


The Programmable Data Density (PDD) Overcomes the Challenges


 2-D PDD (more pixels for both X and Y-axis) is realized!
 Imaging of variable pixel density for the region of interest
 Automatically detects the region of interest


2-Zone PDD for Writer Pole : Enables High Resolution Imaging of Small Region in One Scan.



Single 2-Zone PDD PTR Measurement : Park AFM vs. Conventional AFM


 The Ultimate Improvement in throughput (more than 400%)!! 
 Obtains PTR,writer pole, and other features in All-in-One image scan


Summary: Key Benefits of Programmable Data Density

 High Throughput Feature Measurement by Programmable Data Density (PDD)
 Imaging of variable pixel density for the region of interest
 Automatically detects the small region of interest
 Obtains PTR, writer pole, and other features, All-in-One Scan (7 min), For conventional AFM, it takes ~40 min or longer