Circuit & System Protection


Clearing the Static: ESD training and compliance in the workplace

24 November 2021 Circuit & System Protection


Greg Barron, Actum Group director

ESD (electrostatic discharge) can change the electrical characteristics of a semiconductor device by degrading or destroying it entirely. ESD can potentially damage electronic systems, causing equipment failure. This is because static energy can be found all around us and even the smallest discharge can cause irreversible damage.

ESD training is key to electrostatic discharge control. An effective, systematic and sustainable ESD training programme for personnel is key for any successful ESD control programme and essential to successful electronics manufacturing.

Effective training programmes involve all employees who work within the EPA

Train all employees who work with ESD susceptible items in the electrostatic protected area (EPA) and ensure they know how to test their grounding equipment, such as wrist straps, upon entry and while working.

Effective training is comprehensive and consistent

Training must include ESD prevention procedures and should also explain the physics and the benefits of the programme. Each employee must have a firm grasp of the fundamentals of ESD, as well as the details of the organisation’s ESD control programme plan.

Use a variety of training methods and techniques

Collaborative training is a good way to convey the importance of an ESD control programme. In-house instructors, training videos and interactive workshops are effective ways to ensure personnel actively take part in the training and understand why it is important.

Test, certify and retrain

Testing and certification ensures that employees gain a firm grasp of ESD control procedures and motivates them to adhere to the set standards.


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