Static electricity and components.

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by Armagguedes, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. Armagguedes

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    21
    0
    Hello.

    Acrylic is supposed to store a whole lot static electricity, but will it affect components such as resistors or diodes? I'm using acrylic to separate some polystyrene drawers i have in 4 parts, to help sort the resistors out by E12 value.

    If i want to discharge the static, can i connect wires (with electrician's tape) with their insulation stripped from the drawers/divisions to the metal frame that holds the drawers?

    Thanks.
    Cheers,
    Bruno
     
  2. mrmeval

    Distinguished Member

    Jun 30, 2006
    833
    2
    Voltages as low as 20 volts can do damage to electronics. It is current flow that is the killer not potential. Current moving from/to the device or current induced by current flow near it. Polystyrene is as bad as acrylic.

    Resistors should not matter unless they are very small or are of some unusual construction. Diodes can be weakened and die if zapped. Just wrap them up in a small square of tin foil, maybe five to each bundle. These are cool but aluminum foil does as well if folded to make a farady cage.

    If you're not using proper ESD handling techniques. A grounded ESD mat and wrist strap is a minimum then it really doesn't matter anyway.

    Mats for ESD control, about $55.00 might have access to cheaper stuff at school.
    http://www.esd.tv/mats.html

    Good compilation of Info on ESD and has information on packaging and workstations.
    http://www.dscc.dla.mil/Offices/packaging/ESDS.html

    Intermittants, IOW*, dead, "spooks" and other oddities are caused by ESD

    *Indians on warpath send up smoke signals.
     
  3. hgmjr

    Moderator

    Jan 28, 2005
    9,030
    214
    One aspect of ESD is that the damage done by a seemingly low level of static discharge doesn't result in instant destruction. The time it takes for the damage to result in outright device failure can be a matter of days to months depending on the operating stresses to which the device is normally subjected.

    hgmjr
     
  4. hgmjr

    Moderator

    Jan 28, 2005
    9,030
    214
    Another useful ESD control material is Conductive Foam.

    You can cut this into rectangular sheets with the same dimensions as your plastic drawers and place in the bottom of each drawer. You can then stick your ESD sensitive components into the foam and they will not only be protected from ESD but they will also be easier to organize and retrieve when you are ready to use them.

    hgmjr

    PS. The parts will also not rattle around when you open and close the drawers.
     
  5. Armagguedes

    Thread Starter Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    21
    0
    Actually there are some awesome discounts on ebay for esd mats (look for "static mats"), going from 55USD to 15USD.

    I'm not talking about anything fancy here, just a small metal (aluminium?) cabinet (outside is painted) with 6 polystyrene drawers, each with rails to install dividers (3 per drawer). Since the builder no longer makes the dividers, i had them cut up from an acrylic sheet.

    In this cabinets i will be keeping resistors (regular carbon-film -and some metal-film- 5% 1/4W resistors). However at the "plastic store" i was told acrylic could build up quite a charge, so i was just asking around.

    Thanks
     
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