With the advent of technology and smart products, it’s common for us to purchase computer components and electronic devices – have you ever noticed that they are always wrapped in anti-static bags? As it turns out, this packaging makes everyone curious, but nobody really knows how anti-static packaging works or which type of packaging is used for anti-static purposes. With this article, we are sharing how it works!
The majority of electronic devices and computer components are sensitive and are prone to getting damaged when it releases electrostatic discharges. The static charges can cause severe damages to the internal system/circuitry of microprocessors and components, which makes them useless since they are practically fried. When it comes down to the buildup of static charges, tribocharging is the most common phenomenon.
Tribocharging can be defined as the form of contact electrification with which the materials are charged whenever they come into contact with other materials (frictional contact). To prevent damages to the components and devices, anti-static packaging is utilized, and the most common packaging includes anti-static bags and static shielding bags.
Anti-Static Packaging Types And How Do They Work?
Having said that, let’s see what these two packaging types are and how they work!
Also, make sure to check out my related post – Best Anti Static Bags and Bag Alternatives.
The anti-static bags are designed with polyethylene plastic material, usually used in black or pink color. This material doesn’t hold or generate any type of charge. To illustrate, the components or devices of the bag move or something rubs against them; no charge will be created since tribocharging doesn’t happen. During the shipping and transport of electronics, polyethylene plastic isn’t used only as bags.
This is because this special plastic is used to manufacture polyethylene bubble wraps and poly-foam to add more protection to the electronics packaging. Since these bags work effectively to prevent static electricity buildup, they don’t work to protect electronic devices and components from direct static discharges, which means they are only suitable for components that can’t be damaged by static discharges. However, they do a great job at protecting components where static discharge buildup can damage the sensitive parts.
The anti-static bags work great for protecting sensitive components from such electrostatic discharge. These bags range from 2 mil to 4 mil in thickness, while the width ranges from three inches to 36 inches. Not to forget, they are available in ziplock form for easier closure but make sure that these bags meet the MIL-PRF-81705E standards.
The static-shielding bags are designed with multiple layers. The internal layer is made from the same polyethylene plastic material (it’s the first layer), which creates a softer layer for the electronic devices and components to settle while preventing the static electricity buildup that’s generally created when the package’s components move.
The central layer is made from the aluminum layer that provides extra protection from the electronic discharges (it’s the second layer) and also does the job of a conductor to capture the direct static charge and keep it grounded – it means that the internal components will remain safe. In addition, the external layer (the third one) is made from a specific polyester material that has the dissipative coating of polyethylene plastic. The layer is used for adding additional protection to the packaging bag since it protects the middle later and eliminates the buildup of static charges on the bag’s external side.
It’s an effective choice for protecting static-sensitive products. It is basically a poly tubing that protects the products/devices from electrostatic discharge. This tubing is easy to seal to ensure proper protection. The tubing is made from low-density and virgin polyethylene, which makes it a heat-sealable choice. Moreover, it provides a continuous roll for bigger products!
How Does The Anti-Static Packaging Work?
As we have already talked about two commonly used anti-static packaging options, it’s time to check how they work. However, to decipher the working, one needs to use the TESV and various anti-static bags to cover the TESV that’s installed on the tripod.
In addition, you need to zero the instrument and charge the plastic rod by using a piece of cloth for rubbing and pulling it closer to the TESV’s sensing head. As a result, the electrostatic charge will be created.
However, when the TESV is covered with an anti-static bag, it will show no to little charge. This is primarily because these bags protect the TSV from electrostatic charges and fields. As far as grounding is concerned, it’s not essential since the electric charge stays on the external layer and doesn’t seep in.
To summarize, electrostatic charges are extremely hazardous for computing and electronic devices since it can lead to fire incidents, making it adverse for human life as well as monetary investment. However, anti-static packaging is truly an innovation that’s got the ability to optimize the safety standards for these electronics!