If you work in an environment surrounded by electronics, protecting these devices from potential electric shock is important. A single displaced current of static electricity can cause tens of thousands of dollars in instant damage, not to mention potential data loss from hard drives and servers.
To avoid this kind of issue there are many different forms of protection you and your employees can and should implement. Personal grounding units are recommended, yet they are not the only option. Reducing and eliminating the development of static electricity on your body may prove to be the best direction for you and your employees. If you work inside of a server room or with other types of sensitive equipment, the right kind of apparel can help save on your electronic investment.
ESD (electrostatic discharge) clothing typically goes over your current clothing. Wearing clothing that does not rub up against itself is recommended, but even form fitting clothing can develop a static charge. To prevent the development of this charge, ESD jackets are desirable.
There are several different kinds of jackets available, depending on the kind of movement you perform. A collard ESD jacket provides a more professional look. There are also pullover jackets that are easy to put on and easy to take off. These might work best when additional movement is needed in the arms and shoulders, or when someone is visiting a lab and needs to quickly put on ESD clothing. The jackets are made out of a combination of polyester and carbon fabric, while helps prevent the apparel from generating or spreading an electronic static current.
When something more business casual is required yet you still need it to protect against the development of static charge, a collard ESD jacket at waist length is an excellent option. While classified as a jacket, it is more of a button down work shirt than anything else. The waist length prevents it from becoming too baggy.
The shirt looks more like a button down top worn at the office than a specialized outfit worn when working with sensitive electronics. Plus, the design is made up of a polyester cotton blend, with a small amount of carbon fabric. This makes it more comfortable and soft to touch, while also allowing freedom of movement. This is where the right kind of clothing is necessary for the job. You need to determine the work environment and how an individual will interact with individuals from the outside.
The lab coat apparel is designed to provide a comfortable protective outfit with a bit more reach than the traditional jackets. The lab coats run longer, typically to mid-thigh. This allows for freedom of movement while also preventing the development of static charges. The unit is designed in a similar manner to the button down shirt/jacket described above as it uses a polyester cotton blend and two percent carbon fabric. This makes the lab coat more comfortable to touch and to work in. Generally, this kind of apparel is the kind of clothing most often used when you or your employee must remain in the jacket for the majority of their shift. During extended shifts, added comfort is always desirable.
Protecting against electronic static shock is more than just general apparel. There are accessories you need to look into as well. As hands are typically the conduit bridging the gap between yourself and the electronics you work on, you may need to utilize the aid of ESD gloves. Typically personal grounding proves to be all you will need, but when working with extremely delicate electronics that may also be heat sensitive your best option is often to go with ESD gloves. The gloves protect just like the work shirt and jackets. So, you have the added protection you need while also remaining comfortable.
One of the best ways to reduce static discharge is by grounding your shoes. There are different kinds of personal grounding units out there designed specifically for your feet, and heel grounders can provide the necessary protection you need. These are best worn when you spend the majority of your time around the electronics you’re protecting, as they will reduce potential strain on the devices. They are especially important for those who work in server rooms or other similarly sensitive locations. Shoe grounding is just another form of protection you should consider, depending on the work environment.
To prevent the development of static electric currents that can damage your equipment the right kind of apparel is important. From lab coats and ESD gloves to button down shirts, there is a wide range of options to consider. Choose the outfit that’s right for you and protect your electronics in the process.