Michael Mallary is an IEEE Fellow and Distinguished Lecturer for 2009. He received his S.B. degree in physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1966, and Ph.D. degree in Experimental High Energy Physic from the California Institute of Technology, in 1972.
He was a post doctoral fellow at the Rutherford Laboratory from 1972-1974 and an Assistant Professor of physics at Northeastern University from 1974-1978. There he participated in an experiment at Fermi Laboratory that produced early evidence for the fifth quark using a 300-ton solid iron magnet. From 1978 to 1980 he worked at the Magnetic Corporation of America designing large superconducting magnets for MHD, MRI, energy storage and magnetic separation. In 1980 he joined the Digital Equipment Corporations effort to produce thin film heads for disk drive recording as a head modeler and designer. Here he invented the Shielded Pole perpendicular recording head which has demonstrated superior performance over the conventional monopole head and is now in every disk drive shipped today. He also invented the Diamond inductive head which doubles the effective number of turns. In addition, he has contributed to the theory of flux conduction in thin-film heads at high frequency; low bit aspect ratios for high density in the thermal decay limit; and tilted write fields for improved switching.
His publications and patents have significantly advanced the field of magnetic recording. Mike Mallary is presently working on Heat Assisted Magnetic Recording, Shingle Recording and 2 Photon Recording at the Seagate Technology Research Center in Pittsburgh. He has authored and co-authored 67 issued patents and 52 publications including “Our Improbable Universe” (ISBN 1-56858-301-X).