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A new magnetic recording read head technology based on the magneto-electric effect

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The existing magnetic recording read head technologies use one of the well-known magneto-resistance effects (i.e. anisotropic magneto-resistance, giant magneto-resistance or tunnelling magneto-resistance (TMR)) to read back the data from the magnetic recording medium. These are usually sophisticated devices that require a dc test current flowing through the sensor stack in order to measure its change in resistance (i.e. amplitude response signal) as a function of the fringing magnetic flux of the recorded bits, when the reader moves along the recorded track. In this paper, we propose the design of a new kind of highly sensitive read sensor for magnetic recording heads, which directly produces a voltage response without the need for a test current. This new design is based on the magneto-electric effect in laminated multiferroic materials. Such a magnetic read head is much simplified in terms of sensor construction (i.e. number of layers involved and horizontal biasing requirements) and has a range of potential advantages including similar sensitivity to that of the TMR heads, reduced power consumption, better thermal performances, excellent high frequency operation and reduced cost of production.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5027-5033
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Physics D: Applied Physics
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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