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Wafer Cutting with Super High Pressure Water Jets

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000104116D
Original Publication Date: 1993-Mar-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-18
Document File: 2 page(s) / 42K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Brezoczky, B: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

Disclosed is a method in which wafers with magnetic thin film heads can be effectively cut into sliders using high-pressure jets. Currently sliders with thin film heads are fabricated by depositing periodic arrays of thin film heads on a wafer of a hard slider material such as N58. After preparing the thin film heads, the wafer is sliced into rows, which are then lapped to give proper throat height and then cut further into individual sliders. The cutting is generally done by abrasive wheels, e.g., diamond impregnated wheels, and must be done slowly to avoid damaging the wafer or the cutting wheel. The abrasive wheels are costly and need to be replaced frequently.

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Wafer Cutting with Super High Pressure Water Jets

      Disclosed is a method in which wafers with magnetic thin film
heads can be effectively cut into sliders using high-pressure jets.
Currently sliders with thin film heads are fabricated by depositing
periodic arrays of thin film heads on a wafer of a hard slider
material such as N58.  After preparing the thin film heads, the wafer
is sliced into rows, which are then lapped to give proper throat
height and then cut further into individual sliders.  The cutting is
generally done by abrasive wheels, e.g., diamond impregnated wheels,
and must be done slowly to avoid damaging the wafer or the cutting
wheel.  The abrasive wheels are costly and need to be replaced
frequently.

      Recently it has been found that thin jets of super high
pressure water have some remarkable cutting capabilities [*].  In
this technique, water jets coming out at speeds of 2-3000 ft/sec is
mixed with fine abrasive powder to cut through hard materials.  Some
samples of 4mm thick sapphire single crystals were cut to investigate
this technique.  It was found that SiC powder is an effective
abrasive powder for sapphire.  Slivers of about 1-2mm width were cut
at rates as high as 60ipm (inches per minute).  The material wasted
in the cutting is only about .022" wide.  The results were good
enough to indicate that this technique can be used for cutting out
sliders of thin film heads.  The advantages over the use of abrasive
wheels are th...