17 Mar

Should ESD shoes, heel grounders be worn outside?

Q: Is it ok to wear ESD shoes or heel, toe, or sole grounders outside?

A: No.  MIL-HDBK-263B Appendix 1 page 101 40.1.2 states, “Conductive shoes, shoe covers, or heel grounders should be used to discharge personnel on conductive floors. These items should only be worn in the ESD protected areas and should be kept clean so that contaminants do not inhibit their conductive interface with the floor.”

So, to protect your investment, for good house keeping and maintenance, longevity of the ESD personal equipment, just don them before going into the EPA and take them off when you leave.

Do this and keep them clean (vacuum inside of shoes weekly and maybe clean outsoles and grounders with soapy water once a week) and you’ll get more wear out of them and they’ll be more effective.

03 Mar

Paperwork in the Electrostatic Discharge Protected Area (EPA)

Q: In our organization, there is a lot of paperwork that accompanies the product. Is this harmful to the product due to static generation? I have measured all the documents surface resistivity and find it to be dissipative in nature. Our production environment humidity is controlled from 40%-60%. I also tried to tribocharge the paper but there is no static voltage generated. The funny thing is when I rub my plastic comb and put it near bits of small paper, the bits get attracted to the comb. So is paper really harmful to the semiconductor products that we manufacture for our customer?

ESD Dissipative / Cleanroom Paper

ESD Dissipative / Cleanroom Paper

A: Hello.  It’s good for you to observe the possible generators of static in an EPA (Electrostatic Discharge Protected Area) and to remove all non-essential insulators and to ground conductors or soft ground them, as the case may be, and to use neutralization on isolated conductors and essential insulators (ionization).  You may notice low static charge potential or voltage on that paper, but what happens when it tribocharges with other materials in the EPA? Read More