Circuit & System Protection


Clearing the Static: ESD training in the workplace

29 March 2023 Circuit & System Protection


Greg Barron, Actum Group director

An electrostatic discharge (ESD) is the sudden transfer of static charge between bodies at different charge potentials caused by near contact. ESD can potentially damage or destroy electronic systems.

Static energy can be found all around us and even the smallest discharge can cause irreversible damage. With advancements in semiconductors, electronic parts are become smaller and faster, and this translates into becoming more sensitive to ESD.

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

Top strategies ESD training

• 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, upon entry and whilst working.

• Comprehensive and consistent training

Training must include ESD prevention procedures and should explain the physics as well as the benefits of the programme. Each employee must have a firm grasp of the fundamentals of ESD, and the complete organisation’s ESD Control Programme Plan.

• Variety of training methods and techniques

Collaborative training is a good way to convey the importance of an ESD Control Programme. Informative instructors, training videos and interactive workshops are effective ways to ensure personnel actively take part in the training to ultimately understand why it is important.

• Test, certify, and re-educate

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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