ENGINEER 1C03 Lecture 12: Engineering Design and Graphics 1C03- reaseach

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Engineering Design and Graphics 1C03
Instructor: Dr. Doyle
The floppy disk drive (FDD) was discovered at IBM in 1967 by a designer named Alan Shugart. Its main
purpose was to store data on one computer which could then be transferred to other computers. The earliest floppy
drives used an 8-inch disk compared to the later 5.25-inch disks called diskette due to its smaller size. The 5.25-inch
disk could store 360 kilobytes of data which was much less than the 1.44 megabyte capacity of modern 3.5-inch
diskette. The floppy disk drives were later replaced by CD ROM drives _____.
Fundamentally, a floppy drive reads and writes data to a small, circular piece of metal-coated plastic
magnetic disk, the drive can also be called an electromechanical device. The floppy drive consists of four major
parts which define the complete mechanism of the drive. The major components are named as the stepper motor, the
worm gear, the spur gear and the read/write heads which loads up the data to the disk. When a floppy disk is inserted
into a drive by opening the sliding door the two read/write heads lower and lock the diskette into its place. The
process of writing data to the disk basically starts when the primary or the drive motor starts which spins the diskette
about the metal hub present at the center. At the same time a different motor called stepper motor rotates the worm
gear which further translates linear motion with the help of a spur gear which is present at the other end of the worm
gear. The worm gear and the spur gear apparatus works similar to a rotation of a screw and the resultant linear
motion of the nut. The stepper motor rotates the worm gear in time intervals that coincide with the spaces in the
threads. The main objective of the stepper motor is to move the two read heads onto the correct track on the disk so
which enables the read/write heads to transfer or delete data present on the disk. The floppy disk is divided into a
number of concentric tracks which are further divided into smaller parts called sectors. The read/write heads are
needed to be placed on these concentric tracks on the disk. The stepper motor rotates the rack gear in order to align
the read/write heads with the desired track. From the worm gear, the spur gear is rotated because the spaces present
between the threads coincide between the two of these which transfers the rotation which is the most essential part
of the mechanism. The time it takes for the whole process of reading, writing or deleting the data present on the disk
is called access time.
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