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Servoed Piezo-Ceramic Tape Guides

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000120254D
Original Publication Date: 1991-Apr-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Apr-02
Document File: 2 page(s) / 73K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Winarski, DJ: AUTHOR

Abstract

Tape guiding consists of controlling the lateral and skew motion of the magnetic tape as it passes over the magnetic transducer (head). Lateral motion is a translation of the tape perpendicular to the direction of the tape's streaming velocity. Skew is the angulation of the tape over the head in a direction which is perpendicular to the plane of the tape. In the past, lateral and skew guiding has been achieved by either open channel guides which allow a limited amount of uncontrolled tape motion or compliant tape guides which may have ceramic pads to provide wear resistance.

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Servoed Piezo-Ceramic Tape Guides

      Tape guiding consists of controlling the lateral and skew
motion of the magnetic tape as it passes over the magnetic transducer
(head). Lateral motion is a translation of the tape perpendicular to
the direction of the tape's streaming velocity.  Skew is the
angulation of the tape over the head in a direction which is
perpendicular to the plane of the tape.  In the past, lateral and
skew guiding has been achieved by either open channel guides which
allow a limited amount of uncontrolled tape motion or compliant tape
guides which may have ceramic pads to provide wear resistance.

      This article proposes that tape guides be made out of ceramics
which respond to the piezoelectric effect.  By varying the voltage to
these flexible ceramic guides, the piezoelectric effect could be used
to (a) vary the hold-down force of the tape guides, (b) change the
elevation, and/or (c) change the skew of the tape.  The guiding of
the tape could be monitored by optically tracking an edge of tape on
each side of the head.

      The specific material of choice which is proposed for these
piezoelectric tape guides is Barium Titanate.  An alternative
material could be Lead Zirconium Titanate (PZT).

      The higher the hold-down force, the greater the propensity for
wear on the edge of the tape.  In passive compliant tape guiding,
tolerances such as in the thickness of the flexible beams could
result in hold-down forces much greater than actually necessary to
guide the magnetic tape. Piezo-ceramic tape guides offer a means of
active compliant tape guiding where the hold-down force is regulated
to be enough to get the job done but not be unnecessarily excessive.
The optical sensors tra...