There are many anti static products that are used extensively across many different niches and industries. Today, I will be introducing you to one of the most important anti static items that is employed frequently across several industrial spaces- anti static flooring.
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How to Install Anti Static Flooring?
I have talked in great length about the technicalities of how anti-static flooring actually works.
Here, we will be focusing more on the practical aspect of anti-static flooring- how can you install it and what are some alternatives that you can use in place of it.
What is Anti Static Flooring?
Just as a refresher, let’s begin by exploring what anti static flooring actually is. As suggested by the name, anti static flooring is a type of flooring that inhibits or prevents the generation of electric charge.
This electric charge is typically produced due to friction and can manifest as a pulse or shock of electricity whenever an individual or any other object comes in contact with a charged surface, such as the floor.
This electrostatic discharge is pretty harmless to people- the most you feel is a minute shock- but the issue occurs in sensitive environments. In settings that are rife with inflammable material or sensitive electronic equipment, even a minor spark produced by electrostatic discharge, or ESD, can prove to be devastatingly damaging.
That is why most companies and industries look toward anti-static flooring solutions to create as safe of a working environment as possible.
How to Select the Right Anti Static Flooring?
When it comes to selecting anti-static flooring, you need to be considerate and careful, especially if you are operating in a professional or industrial setting.
There are many factors that you must take into account when you are going to make such a decision, particularly those related to performance specifics and requirements. There are many different types of anti-static flooring available for purchase, each with its own set of specifications.
How Do I Go About Installing My Anti Static Flooring?
There are certain things you need to take care of before you start the installation process for your anti-static flooring. To begin with, you need to make sure that the ground is completely clean.
You will have the help of an expert that will help determine the optimal state of the ground for your anti-static flooring before it is installed. All the old tiles and adhesive needs to be completely removed before you install the new flooring.
One of the most important aspects of the installation of anti static flooring is adhesive. Like any other flooring, you need some kind of adhesive to attach the flooring material to the ground.
Not only that, but you also need to lay down some conductive material, such as copper foil or straps, so that the accumulating static charge can be safely dissipated.
The adhesive typically used to install an anti-static floor tends to be the conductive kind so it can facilitate the movement of the static charges through the floor and towards the grounding source.
How to Ground Anti Static Flooring?
The way that anti static flooring works is that it effectively provides a means for the accumulating static charge to safely discharge in addition to preventing the buildup in the first place. For this purpose, you need to ground your anti static flooring. Here are a few different ways you can ground your anti static flooring:
Grounding to the Electrical Outlet
One way for you to ground your anti static flooring is by connecting it to the ESD electrical outlet. This is the most commonly employed grounding method. For this, you would typically use a copper strap with an adapter to attach to the outlet.
Grounding to the Natural Earth Ground
Another way to ground the flooring would be to connect it to the natural earth ground. This can be done by using a grounding rod that is drilled into the actual ground and then connected to the flooring.
Grounding to an Earth Ground
Lastly, you can ground the flooring by connecting it to an earth ground. For example, if your building has in built steel columns that are exposed, you can connect the copper strap directly to one of these.
How Does an Anti Static Floor Mat Work?
A substitute that you can use in place of anti static flooring is an anti static floor mat. An anti static floor mat works in a similar way that anti static flooring does- it provides a safe means for static charge to be dissipated and neutralizes it to prevent its potentially harmful effects from materializing.
If you would like to go into even more detail, you can read this in-depth entry I penned about anti-static mats.
How to Use an Anti Static Grounding Mat?
Similar to anti static flooring, you need to ground your anti static mat in order to maximize its effectiveness at mitigating electrostatic charge.
You will find that you can get either vinyl or rubber-based ESD mats. Vinyl mats are cheaper and are mostly used for tabletop purposes, whereas rubber mats are more resistant.
That is why their application is more frequently seen in industrial spaces. Again, it goes without saying that you need to purchase a mat that fits your requirements and has the specifications that satisfy your needs in particular.
To make an anti static mat work, you need to ground it. This can be done either by placing it on a conductive surface or by connecting it to an electrical outlet or grounding source using cables.
Simply place your mat on top of your work surface or the floor- depending on the kind you have purchased- and ground it before you start working. This will dissipate all of the charges into the ground.
Some mats work in combination with anti-static wrist straps. These have to be worn by you on your body while you are carrying out any work on top of or in relation to the mat.