You may or may not have heard about Metcal’s new soldering station, the CV-5200. The evolutionary tool removes much of the reliance on visual inspection of hand-soldered joints and adds a second, more technology-driven method for validating a successful Read more
Qualifying the SCS 81705 Series anti-static shield bags to military standards
There are a few, sometimes complicated steps to go through before your product can qualify for a particular military specification. SCS recently introduced their new 81705 Series static shield Read more
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How you clean your ESD mat–and with what–can make a big difference in performance and in life expectancy of the product. Excellent cleaning solutions have been specifically formulated to easily and effectively remove flux, solder, chemicals, dirt and grime without damaging your mat. Using these special cleaning products will help extend the life of your mat.
Follow these dos and don’ts when cleaning your ESD mat –
Clean with alcohol or ammonia. These chemical will cause your mat to dry out and become brittle.
Clean with a silicone-based cleaner. It will leave a residue that could reduce the mat’s ESD capabilities.
Use strong chemicals. They could corrode your mat.
Clean with the proper solution and mixture for your specific mat.
Create a cleaning schedule so you’ll never have to worry about residue build-up.
Consider the brand of the cleaner. Oftentimes companies test their cleaners on their mats.
Remove any residue immediately, such as flux and solder.
Test your mats regularly to ensure optimum performance of your ESD mat.
Clean your mat if the RTT or RTG tests show a rating less than normal.
Sierra Heavy Duty Rubber Worktop Mat Kit with Wrist Strap, Ground Cord and Snaps
Like everything in manufacturing, the Electro-Static Disapative (ESD) mat, whatever type, continues to evolve to keep areas ESD-safe. Before you buy, think about what you really need to do the job. Mats come in all sizes and shapes and materials and can be expensive, depending on the application.
First the skinny on ESD mat types –
Conductive Mats (101 to 105 ohm) – low electrical resistance allowing ESD to flow across the surface. When grounded the ESD flows to ground and neutralizes the excess charge on the mat and worker.
Anti-Static Mats (105 to 1012 ohm) – higher electrical resistance than conductive mats and like conductive mats allow ESD to flow across the surface, however at a slower rate to prevent damage to microcircuit devices unable to tolerate a sudden flow of static charge from the device to a grounded mat.
Non-Conductive Mats (Insulator) (1012 ohm or higher) – prevent the flow of ESD across the surface. Generally used in high voltage environments where electrical charge movement of is undesirable and potentially life threatening.
Rate of Neutralization– for work environments and many applications mats for neutralizing ESD range from 105 to 1011 ohm to efficiently address static. Dissipation of static electric charges will happen rapidly and at a controlled rate.
Setting– Will the mat be used on carpet or hard surface like concrete? Mats can cause accidents, for instance, tripping if on carpet, or sliding if on concrete. Most rubber and vinyl conductive and anti-static mats will not wear well against chairs or carts. The wheels and weight will cause breakdown. Use ESD mats made to work on carpet or under chairs.
Cost– A high–priced mat doesn’t mean it’s the right mat. For instance, more expensive ones like conductive mats could damage devices with microcircuits by reducing static charges too fast.
Cleaning – Keep your mat clean and residue-free. Special static control cleaning solutions are available. Some mats can be dry-mopped or just swept.
Life of Your Mat – If properly cared for, mats can last for years. Depending on your mat type, they can be self-healing and also very resistant to solder drips and spits.
ESD mats protect sensitive equipment by drawing static electricity off workers before they touch susceptible objects. An ESD mat safely transfers static from a worker to the ground.
They’re generally cushy—so they help your back, your feet, everything that can begin to hurt after hours of standing up. Think anti-fatigue.
Note – Ungrounded conductive or anti-static mats hold an ESD charge and will transfer a charge to the next thing the mat touches.
All-Spec carries a large assortment of ESD mats. Have questions? Our customer service representatives can help guide you to the right mat for your application.
Did you know? The most significant invention to accelerate the electronics revolution happened in 1948 with the invention of the transistor. Next, in 1958 Jack Kirby invented the integrated circuit (Nobel Prize winner 2000) Half a year later Robert Noyce (and a co-founder of Intel) opened the door to smaller and more reliable, complex devices with the invention of the computer chip. Today, IC architectures can carry more than a billion transistors on a chip and soon may execute more than 4 trillion calculations per second. All this has led to less spacing between pin-outs of each chip and the transistors’ gates and junctions and, therefore the need for advanced ESD control. (more)