Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (Matsushita) and Minebea Co., Ltd. (Minebea) have today announced that they have agreed to begin consignment production of fluid dynamic bearing (FDB) motors for HDDs.
Under the agreement, production of FDB motors for 2.5-inch HDDs, designed by Matsushita's Motor Company division, will be consigned to Minebea. Minebea will begin mass production of the motors from the third quarter of 2002 at its Thai plant. Minebea's advanced ultra-precision machining and mass-production technologies, together with its large-scale production base in Thailand, will enable Matsushita to meet its requirements to expand its FDB motor business.
Given the increasing market demand for higher memory capacity and lower noise generation of HDDs, both companies expect rapid transition of HDD spindle motor technology from ball bearing type to fluid dynamic bearing type from now onwards. In addition, applications of HDDs, currently PC-oriented, are expected to expand into the area of digital home appliances.
By close collaboration, the two companies, each with rich accumulation of expertise in FDB motor technology, hope to achieve a synergistic effect in their efforts to respond to the rapidly growing market in a quicker, timelier manner.